There are believers who imprisoned, belittled, ostracized for their faith in Jesus. This has been true since the times of the book of Acts. Let’s consider them and remember them and learn patience, silence, trust, and fellowship from them and their stories. (Hebrews 13:3; Psalm 11:2; Genesis 3:3)

Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller, Pastor Muhib Kalfala
Sermon 11774
11:00 AM on 10/27/2019

 #Spiritual Warfare 

#Trials & Temptations 

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Bound with Those in Bonds

 

P. Schaller –

Morning. Praise God! Thank you, Lord. Thank you the music team, the song leading. Norm Lerch is here. Good
to have him. He’s one of our ushers. P. Ron over here. We had a great week. Also we have a
couple visitors from Iran, Australia, Iranians, Afroos and Farshad and these two gentlemen.
That’s amazing. Thank you. We welcome you.

Yes. Is it Karen Pevac, they are in her class or something? Yeah. Beautiful. Well, next Sunday is the International Day of Prayer for the persecuted Christians in the world but we moved it up for us this Sunday. Today we are going to speak about that and lead you in your thinking this morning about our sisters and brothers that
are in the world that are facing persecution. We can learn a lot from them and recognize who
they are generally speaking and understand the principle.

For our introduction, I’d like you to turn with me to two places, Genesis 3:15. We have P. Muhib is going to share also. And P. Scibelli back from Asia. He’s been gone for three weeks. Is it three weeks? Three weeks and then he’s
going to share tonight. It will be a great time to hear about all the work that God is doing in the
ministry, Greater Grace World Outreach in Asia. 3:15, God is cursing the serpent who is the
devil and saying I will put enmity. Enmity, we have that word in English.

Enemy and enmity are from the same root. There will be a contest between you and the seed of the woman. 15. That’s all I want to say about that verse. There is a contest that is on a spiritual level between the seed
of the woman. We know in our Bible study that became the line of Abraham, the line of Isaac,
Jacob, Joseph to David and then the line to Christ and Christ is the seed of the woman. Though
thousands of years later, but he is the Messiah and he’s in a contest with Satan.

Okay. So turn now to Psalm 11. We’re going to read verse 2. Before we read it, I want to explain something to
you about people. This is a demographic of people. Billions and billions of people. There are just
the average people. Just people. Like people you meet every day. People on the street, in the
store, in the gym. Chinese people. Vietnamese people. Iranian people. People. Millions and
billions of people. But there is also the seed of the woman or these are Christ’s people. Born
again people. Spirit filled people.

That spiritual, that reality of the Spirit in your life is our privilege that we are different from other people. We are born again. We have been taken out and we are in the body of Christ. We are the church. We are the people of God and we have the Spirit of God. Then there is another category of people. The evil people. You could say all these
people are evil. Yeah, they have the potential and they are but not like Ps. 11 :2. There is a kind
of evil that recognizes supernaturally Christ.

We read it in Mark 1 when the man filled with demons. Jesus is there and the man runs and throws himself at his feet and says depart from me, thou Holy One of Israel. What do I have to do with you? Did you come to destroy me? This is on a level of spiritual reality that the average person doesn’t understand. This evil is attacking
the seed of Christ or the seed of the woman. It’s a very real thing. Psalm 11:2, 2 Thessalonians. 3:2, Paul said
pray for us we would be delivered from evil men.

There is a category of people capable of targeting and recognizing God and his work. And they bend their bow. Here’s a verse. Privately shoot at who? The upright in heart. Are you persecuted for your faith. Are you targeted? You might say not that I know of. That’s true for many of us. I don’t know. I haven’t seen it for a
while. Don’t underestimate what we are talking about today. It says they that live godly in
Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. And this is being targeted because you are godly.

Because of that. In our world you could be working at a fire station as a volunteer fireman and in
another station five miles away there is some guy there he’s not a normal guy. There is an evil
spirit. There is something about this man who recognized you. He privately shoots an arrow all
the way from that fire station. He’s able to take his bow and arrow and he goes five miles to
your station.

Suddenly you get in trouble with your boss at the station and you don’t know why.
It happened out of the blue. You say what is going on? You’re demoted or fired, or something
happens that you get in trouble. You have to see your superior. It is spiritual. It happens in a
police station, in a hospital, in a church, in the government because we are in a world that is
targeting people that are godly.

Daniel in Persia was targeted by the other leaders in the government. They said we can’t get rid of him. We got to get rid of that guy and the only way is regarding the laws of his God. Let’s come up with something and they targeted him. He ended up in a lion’s den and God delivered him. Joseph was targeted. David was targeted by Saul and David didn’t understand. Why does this guy hate me, and he throws his javelin at me? Prov.
28;28 I’ll have to hide. When the evil is in strong numbers.

This is the idea here. If this becomes a government, this is a government to evil that is persecuting Christians. Then let’s recognize it. North Korea, Iran, Eritrea, Afghanistan, China. There are ten countries that have extreme and
severe persecution. We want to learn from them this morning and think about them and have
some prayer for them this morning in our service. You might say this isn’t happening right now.

Praise God we can assemble and not ashamed of our faith. Praise God. I might get hurt in a
police station or in a hospital or where I work or in my neighborhood or something, but I can
learn from my persecuted brothers and sisters how I can live. I can learn from them. That’s
what we are going to be talking about this morning. It’s going to be a good service. Oh, yeah. I
know it’s a heavy-duty subject, but we are going to have a good service here today.

P. Muhib – I’m P. Muhib from the Sudan. As P. Schaller highlighted, the first week of November,
the universal church brings to mind the persecuted church around the world in prayers. We
make a committed of love to pray for a brother or sister in different spots of the world. I think
we are in a very good place spiritually where five of us can chase a hundred. You know how we
do it. Through prayers.

As you walked in, you received ten ways that tells you how to pray for a
brother or sister and their persecution. There are so many ways. These are ten we highlight. In
the early service, we highlighted #2. We pray that they might actually know that we are praying
for them. I thought about #7. Wisdom. Remember in Acts 6, Stephen was given wisdom. God
gave him wisdom and they were not able to make a case against his wisdom.

We have to realize in Psalm 64 there is evil government. This evil men and women and they are encouraging
themselves in an evil manner. They plot evil but in the last one. I love this last one. They be
rooted in the word of God. People in the Far East, the Middle East, in far villages, in areas
where there is severe persecution, they need to know Psalm. 64:2-3. Hide me from the evil plots.
They need to know they have the Holy Spirit. They need to know doctrine.They need to know God loves them in a specific way. They need to know we are praying for them.

Thee are ways as P. Schaller mentioned, we don’t remember sometimes. God help us to remember. That’s very
creative from the H.S. Every year in November, the universal church gets together and says we
are going to bow our knees and think about believers in the Far East and China where there are
no rights. Where I came from Sudan, you cannot convert. It is illegal for you to consider
conversion.

Once you are converted, you cannot reveal it, or you will be under severe – it can
get to death. There are people out there that need to know we are praying for them. Evil is not
going to stop. Here’s the good news. The devil is God’s devil. We know from the Bible, from the
principles in the Bible, even though there is evil, the god in the world, God is in control. He is in
control in prayer closet.

He’s in control when the H.S. gives Stephen wisdom to speak before
the counsel. They are not able to make the case. He’s in control even when they kill the body.
He leads us to go to places. We love these people up. We say we are with you. We cannot
imagine. We are not in your shoes, but we are in a way through the Holy Spirit. I ask you to
make small groups or pray by yourself.

Just in quietness consider persecutions. These are
believers and we would love the Holy Spirit to remind them we are praying for them. I don’t
know the mechanism. I don’t know how it happens. But I know that we, five of us in Lev. 26 can
chase 100 demons in simple prayer. The prayers of the weakest saint does a lot of work in
heaven. Make your small groups and we can pray and think about these precious people.

P. Schaller – You have this paper for your prayer and this piece of cloth is like Indian or Middle
Eastern. You can tie it on your key chain and use it like a memory thing to pray for our brothers
and sisters. I got to do that on my key chain today. Heb. 13, I could ask P. Steve to bring two
chairs. I need two chairs for the message today. I’m going to use P. Muhib also. And a chain. Do
I have any volunteers?

Okay. Hebrews 13:2, I don’t know about you, but I don’t remember them. Do
you? Do you remember the people in bonds for the faith? The top ten countries where they are
in bonds: North Korea, Afghanistan, Somalia, Libya, Pakistan, Sudan, Eritrea, Yemen, Iran and
India. They are in bonds. Do you remember them? My confession to you is the other night, two
nights ago, I was praying and just saying to the Lord, please help me to remember them
because I don’t.

I read Richard Wumbrandt books. His books are awesome. I’ve lived in Eastern
Europe. I’ve traveled a lot in the world, but I have not been, I’ve been detained for a weekend. I
haven’t been in jail for my faith. But some have. And some are there today. If we could put
them in this chair here. I’m not in that chair. I’m in this one. I need to put my, I got to put myself
in their chair and think about them.

Their children can’t go to college. They can’t live anywhere in a city. Only in a ghetto. They can’t have a government job. They can’t get a passport. They can’t move around. They may go to jail. The police come. Their money is little because of Jesus Christ. If it wasn’t for J.C. they would be living very okay, but because of Jesus Christ, they have
to leave the country if they can get out. These are sisters and our brothers. I’m not wanting you
to feel guilty about it.

I don’t think they want us to feel guilty about it. I don’t think God wants
us to feel bad about it. I’d just like to learn something from them and learn how to remember
them. I think they have a lot to say to us. Okay. It’s sad but it’s okay. We’re going to learn something. Hebrews 13:3, Did I get mixed up on the verse? Vs. 3. Remember them that are in bonds
as bound with them. P. Muhib, you want to come over?

As he passes by me, I’ll give him the chain. Can you put that on you? Why is he bound? Not because of me or you. Why is he bound? Because of Christ. He’s bound. The Bible says remember him as being bound with him. Basically
I got my own over here. I asked the tech department to load me up with chains, so on your way
out if you want to pick up a chain! I know there is a lot of drama in this picture, but I want you
to see I live in America. He doesn’t.

Okay. How could I remember him as being bound. This is
heavy. As being bound with him. I don’t know. I talked on the phone last night to my son, Kyle.
He and I came up with a message on the subject. We had a few minutes of fellowship. He said
what are you going to preach tomorrow? I told him about persecution. What can you tell me
about it?

He goes, right away he said, I said those people can teach us something. What do you
think they can teach us? He said patience. Because if you cannot get a coffee. He can’t get a
coffee. If I remember I could learn something from him. Kyle told me in Lynchburg, VA where
he was living a couple years ago, there was a traffic light on the way to church. The pastor said
in the church, I know some of you are troubled by how long that traffic light is.

I said, Kyle, do you mean that was an issue in going to church? He didn’t say that. Can you imagine you can’t
go to church because it’s raining outside, the traffic light is long. I can’t get my coffee on time.
Can you imagine? Make up a few things. Can you imagine not going to church because ___.
Turn to your neighbor and say it. How about some of the folks that have come from these
countries.

Would you like to raise your hand and say I’m saying something that is important for
us? Anybody? I guess you don’t want to do that. Okay. I’m not humiliating us. I’m talking to
myself. I want you to be stirred up in remembering these poor folks because the Bible says
remember them this way. They’re hurting people. They have to learn that God is all that they
have.

Then I said to Kyle, what’s the next thing? He said silence. I didn’t understand what he
meant. I was thinking maybe he means – we talked a little, maybe when you are done cursing
and spitting and being angry and complaining and writing your letters and making your phone
calls and there is no where to turn, you learn to be quiet and humble and broken and you have
God.

You learn to be quiet and be still and know he is God. Psalm 46:10. Maybe without this, we
can be, we are filled with our power and ourselves and our opinions and our way of doing
things and getting it done. We’re good at that. Get it done. Could our brothers and sisters teach
us – you can take that chain off, pastor. You’re free! You’re’ free! Give him a hand. He’s free!
Third and fourth thing. We’ll finish.

Could we learn from them about Christ. Could they speak to
us about Christ and that’s how we will remember them. They are in trouble. Joseph in Egypt.
The three Hebrew boys in Persia. Daniel in Persia. Paul and Silas. They are in trouble. Our New
Testament is teaching us suffering is part of life. Suffering is part of life. I don’t like it and don’t
really want it but maybe it’s good because if Jesus Christ – it says when we have fiery trials, the
spirit of glory rests on us.

There will be times in China or North Korea or Pakistan where the
Spirit and the joy of the believer there you can’t explain it. It is God. The Spirit of God is
recognized by evil. And the evil attacks those godly people that are trusting. Third thing:
Patience, learn patience. Not a patience that surrenders with pessimism, but a patience is in
William Barclay’s words. I have it here to read to you. “Not with dumb resignation.

This is patience. Oh well. Nothing I can do about it. Oh well. But with holy joy. Not only in the absence
of murmuring but with a song of praise. Only HUPOMENE can enable a man to do that.” 3)
Trusting. This person is trusting. 4) When P. Muhib is free and comes to the brothers who have
been in there, they have a fellowship together. They say God was with us, Acts 4. They have a
fellowship in the Spirit, and they are saying to each other.

They see each other and it says in Acts 4:31 they were filled with the Spirit and you couldn’t stop them. This movie, Sheep Among Wolves. I recommend it. In Iran this documentary about the Iranians that are leaving the
mosques and are going to house churches and looking for believers and seeking God and many
finding him. When you find him like Afroos and Farshad your story many of you know. They
were living in Iran. Did you have one or two children?

Esther only? Esther only. Their daughter. The police or the mullah came to the apartment and said we are going to take your daughter away from you and put her in an Islamic family. They being Christians said to each other this
can’t happen. Were going to escape, flee the country. I want to remember our sisters and
brothers because their faith is precious. When we meet them, and we realize these are people
that are serious about their faith.

They put their life on the line. They put their family on the line. We have a number of people in Pakistan where these people 100 years ago, there was a movement of God. Now they live in a ghetto. They are in ghetto sections of the two cities. Lahore and another city, Islamabad. They watch classes from P. Love and P. Scibelli. They have
something together. They have a fellowship like we had with Jim Indusi’s family yesterday in
York. He went home to be with the Lord but a lot of us old timers went and celebrated his life
with his family.

We were saying the Lenox days how he was washing P. Stevens’ car and smiling
all the time and talking a lot and loving people. Jim Minduci, my brother. My sister in the faith.
This is what we have. It’s precious to us. I remember these people because of what they are
looking at and because in a little way I can understand why they do it. Why do they do that?
Why are they committed? Why are they willing to lose their life? Why are they serious about
evangelism when it is dangerous like in Uzbekistan.

And by the way, we know these people. In Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. We know people in Asia. We know people. In Vietnam, they are your sisters and brothers there. We remember them. 4) They get to see God’s work. They get to see it. We did a Bible study in China one time, maybe 20 years ago. I was in an apartment and a
group of people and a knock on the door. They said can we ask you to get in the bathroom and
get in the shower. I’m thinking, I got all my clothes on. I said sure.

So they didn’t know who was at the door. I go in the bathroom and they said be quiet. If you hear people talking, don’t say anything. Just be quiet. They live like this. All the time when they meet together it’s a birthday
party. They have a Styrofoam birthday cake. They put it under and pull it out and start singing
happy birthday when there is something suspicious going on outside the window or there is a
knock on the door.

They are persecuted because Jesus Christ is a different spirit. The spirit of
the devil is against the Spirit of God. If you have the Spirit of God and you are serious about
that, he will target you. If he has power, he may destroy you. Jesus said do not fear them that
will destroy the body. Do not fear him. You will go to heaven. The book of Revelation in the
Bible is a book about martyrs. These martyrs go to heaven and are there today. They got there because they were killed for their faith. Amazing people. Let’s remember them as being with
them and honor them in our hearts and prayers.

Amen.

 

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