“And the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley), after his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him. Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High. And he blessed him and said: ‘Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; And blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.’ And he gave him a tithe of all. Now the king of Sodom said to Abram, ‘Give me the persons, and take the goods for yourself.’ But Abram said to the king of Sodom, ‘I have raised my hand to the LORD, God Most High, the Possessor of heaven and earth, that I will take nothing, from a thread to a sandal strap, and that I will not take anything that is yours, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich’-except only what the young men have eaten, and the portion of the men who went with me: Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre; let them take their portion.’”
You and I must lead our lives of faith for the purpose of preaching the gospel of the Lord. Our lives of faith are led to spread the gospel of the water and the Spirit that the Lord gave us. How should we live out our faith, now that we have been saved from all our sins thanks to the Lord? For what purpose should we live as those who have become righteous people? All of us should live for no other purpose than to spread the gospel throughout this whole world.
Abraham, our father of faith, left his homeland in Ur of the Chaldeans and went to the land of Canaan. And there he led his life of faith, preaching the gospel of God and humbly devoting all his heart to Him.
All of us should also live like Abraham. Just as it’s pointless for someone to run without any direction, if we lead our lives of faith without any purpose even after receiving the remission of our sins from the Lord and being saved by Him, then this faith can only be wrong. You and I must therefore set a clear purpose of faith in our hearts as we carry on with our Christian lives. And this purpose is to preach all over the world the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the one and only Truth.
The Purpose of Our Lives of Faith Is to Spread the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit
The Lord Jesus commanded us to be witnesses to His gospel throughout the whole wide world, from Judea and Samaria to the ends of the earth. So, it is our duty as the righteous to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit to each and every soul all over the world in every walk of life. We cannot afford to worry about anything else. At all times, whether awake or asleep, we must constantly think about how we can preach the Lord’s gospel to these countless people living in every corner of this world.
There are indeed so many places where this gospel of the water and the Spirit must still be preached, but right now, we are struggling to live up to our full commitment to carry out this work. For many of our brothers and sisters, it’s a difficult spiritual battle just to share our gospel books with the souls around them. Indeed, as we continue to work hard to spread the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we can realize that we ourselves are too weak and our shortcomings are too many. This is extremely frustrating to all of us, but rather than surrendering ourselves to these hardships, we must still run towards the goal that God has set for us.
Here in today’s Scripture passage, there is a man who waged a spiritual battle to preach the Lord’s gospel, and who ultimately prevailed in this battle. This man is none other than Abraham, the father of faith. The Scripture passage we read today describes how Abraham, after returning triumphantly back from the battle, gave up all the spoils of war to the worldly king of Sodom including the people. Abraham had taken 318 of his trained men from his own house to battle against a king named Chedorlaomer and his allied kings, and after prevailing over these kings, he rescued not only his nephew Lot but also many other souls. Upon Abraham’s triumphant return, the king of Sodom came out to receive him, and this fleshly king said to Abraham, “Take all the goods for yourself, but return all the people.” What the king of Sodom was trying to get his hand on was not the material possessions, but the people’s souls.
What Is More Important to Us than Wealth?
After winning this war Abraham returned with such a great deal of spoils that if he had any fleshly thoughts, it would have been very easy for him to get greedy over so much wealth. And just as the king of Sodom was suggesting to him, Abraham could have taken all the spoils of war for himself. But Abraham did not do this. He gave up all the goods except the portion for his allies and the food his soldiers had eaten. Abraham prized the soul far more than any riches, and we may say that this is the very greatness of Abraham that set him apart from every ordinary man, as well as all the self-righteous people.
Even the righteous may get greedy before so much wealth. But Abraham was solely interested in the souls, and he also earnestly cared for the souls in his household. Indeed, Abraham was quite different even from most righteous people. We call Abraham the father of faith even to this day and age because he never let his heart be captivated by the riches of this world, but always appreciated the preciousness of the soul. As someone who waged a spiritual war all his life and prevailed in the end, therefore Abraham truly deserves to be called our father of faith.
When We Look at Abraham, the Goal for Our Lives as the Righteous Is Made Clear
Today, as we look at Abraham, we should all ask ourselves the following questions: “What goal should we set for our lives? Now that we are living a righteous life, what should be our goal? Is everything okay if just our own church is prosperous, our lives are comfortable, and we have enough to eat and drink?” In answering these questions, we must make up our minds as to where we would set our goal as the people of faith. In other words, we must set the goal of our faith to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Our goal is to preach the Truth of being born again of water and the Spirit to all the people around in this world regardless of where they are—whether they are around us or not, or whether we see them at home, at school, or at work, our goal is to preach the gospel to everyone. Our goal also includes spreading this Truth to theological seminaries and other religious groups everywhere. For you and me to truly live out our faith, we must have such a clear-cut goal.
Indeed, all of us the born-again Christians must live for the purpose of spreading the true gospel throughout the whole world. In speaking of our purpose as the righteous living on this earth, God has told us to be His witness for His gospel in all Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth. This is what our Lord asked from His disciples just before ascending to Heaven by saying to them, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:19-20). This is the Great Commission that the Triune God has instructed and commanded us. God has commanded us to follow His Word, to live by faith, to fight and defeat our enemies by this faith, and to preach the gospel to every nation. Like this, spreading the gospel is something that our Lord has personally entrusted to you and me. That is why, if we really want to follow the Lord, we must make it our goal to spread the gospel of the water and the Spirit, just as the Lord has entrusted this task to us.
When we really ponder on what our purpose in life should be, we cannot help but reach the conclusion that there is no other purpose for our lives than proclaiming the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Spreading the gospel is our sole duty as the righteous. The proclamation of the gospel alone can be the goal of our lives. Think about it. Is there anything else that can be our purpose in life if not the spreading of this gospel? What else can truly nourish our souls if not the proclamation of the gospel? The gospel is the real bread for everyone’s soul, and none other than preaching this gospel is the very purpose for our lives and the bread for our spirits. We cannot live unless we do this work, for we would starve spiritually. Your soul and mine will starve to death unless we serve and preach this gospel.
The Lord told us that He wants us to prosper in all things and be in health, just as our souls prosper. If our souls go astray and perish, then everything is ruined. If our souls starve to death, our bodies would also perish along with our souls. Therefore, the righteous must diligently carry out this work of spreading the gospel, and thus fulfill the will of God and obtain the true bread from Him at the same time. And I believe that all of us must become such righteous people.
What Should We Do to Spread the Gospel?
To the question of what kind of life we ought to live, I would like to answer that we must live the kind of life that Sarah had led. Sarah, who was named Sarah by God later, was always obedient to her husband Abraham, ready to go wherever he asked her to go and follow him wherever he asked her to follow. She never uttered a single word of complaint to Abraham.
Sarah was wholeheartedly obedient to her husband Abraham. She was so obedient to him that she was even willing to wed another man in order to save her husband. There is only one reason why she did this: It’s because she thought that her husband, who had received the remission of sins from God, was her lord. If Abraham’s wife were a stubborn and demanding woman, then it would have been next to impossible for her to follow God. When Abraham was about to send her off to Pharaoh, if she had not been so obedient to her husband, she would have said to him, “How can you do this to me? How can you send me off to marry someone else to save your own life? If I have to wed another man, I will kill you first before I leave.”
As those preaching the gospel of the Lord, you and I should also be completely obedient to God as Sarah was to her husband. This means that we should forsake our own thoughts and submit ourselves to God 100 percent. We must break our own stubbornness, for if we cling to our own thoughts, we cannot preach the gospel. Throughout her entire lifetime with Abraham, Sarah always thought that her husband’s life was her own life, and his riches were her own riches. In other words, she placed all her hopes and dreams on her husband. That is why she could obey Abraham without any hesitation when he said to her, “You are so beautiful that someone may kill me to take you. So if anyone asks you about us, tell him that I am your brother. And if he wants to wed you, then marry this man.” Shortly after this, Abraham and Sarah were indeed visited by Pharaoh’s men. These men then said to Sarah, “Come with us to Pharaoh. He demands to see you, for the whole nation of Egypt is speaking of how beautiful you are. But before we go, let me ask a question. Who is this man next to you?” Sarah then said to them, “He is my brother.”
Abraham’s wife Sarah had united her heart with her husband. She was one with Abraham 100 percent. This kind of unity is also indispensable to all of us who have received the remission of our sins—that is, only when our hearts are united with our Lord 100 percent can we really preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Wherever the Lord commands us to go, we must go there even if it’s to our death. And whatever the Lord commands us to do, we must do it all: If the Lord tells us to preach the gospel, we must preach it; if the Lord tells us to serve the gospel, we must serve it; and if the Lord tells us to make the proclamation of the gospel our purpose in life, then we must make it our goal to preach the gospel even if it entails heavy costs to us. Those who lead such a life are the ones who have united their hearts with the Lord 100 percent. And such people are the righteous who can faithfully preach the Lord’s gospel united with Him.
It’s written in Psalm 133:1, “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in Unity!” How much should we be united with God? How should we unite our hearts with Him? Just as Abraham’s wife Sarah had united herself with her husband, we must also unite our hearts with the Lord ready to go wherever and whenever the Lord our Groom tells to go. Just as Sarah was in complete unity with her husband Abraham, so must our hearts be united completely with the Lord. That’s because we can preach the genuine gospel of the Lord all over the world only if our hearts are at one with the Lord.
Abraham became a rich man thanks to his wife. Of course, it’s because of God’s blessings that Abraham became rich, but his wife’s faith and efforts also played a significant role. Think about it. Given the fact that Abraham had no less than 318 men raised and trained in his house, he would have needed a great deal of wealth to provide for all their needs. Imagine that you were to provide for 318 men. Just how costly would it be? Moreover, these 318 men recorded in the Bible only refer to battle-ready men, and this number leaves out women and children. If everyone were actually counted, then the number would probably have been three times larger than 318, since Abraham’s servants must have also had wives and children. How many people would Abraham have had in his house then? It would have been at least a thousand. The fact that Abraham could afford to keep so many people under him shows that he was an extremely wealthy man. And among the factors that explain how Abraham became so wealthy, his wife Sarah’s effort played a large role in this.
Sarah’s husband Abraham received the remission of his sins and became a righteous man, and Sarah served him faithfully in every way possible. As the preachers of the Lord’s gospel we too must serve the Lord in every way we can, just like Abraham’s wife Sarah did. Unless we obey God wholeheartedly like Sarah, it will become impossible for us to spread this gospel. That’s because, as you all may know very well, it’s not so easy and simply to preach the gospel.
We Must Do As God Commands Us
When God wants to use us to spread the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we must do whatever He commands us to do: If He commands us to answer the phone, we must answer the phone; if He commands us to sweep the floor, we must sweep the floor; if He commands us to make money for the gospel, we must make money; if He commands us to pray, we must pray; and if He commands us to preach His Word, then we must preach His Word. In other words, we must do everything God commands us to do no matter what it is. We can carry out this work of proclaiming the gospel only when we become such obedient people who do as the Lord commands us, just as Abraham’s wife Sarah had obeyed her husband. This means that unless we work as the Lord commands us, we cannot preach the gospel no matter how gifted we may be.
Whoever wants to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit faithfully must abandon his own thoughts completely. Only when you forsake yourself and obey the Lord 100 percent with all your heart can this gospel be fully proclaimed. Only when you and I become like Abraham’s wife is the gospel preached actually and effectively on this earth. Like this, we can preach the gospel only if we submit ourselves completely to the Lord, and only then can we prevail in the spiritual war that inevitably follows. When Abraham took his 318 men into battle, he divided his forces into two and issued detailed orders on how each camp should fight. As his servants fought exactly as was ordered by Abraham, they were ultimately victorious in the war, capturing so much spoils of war and delivering so many people. And they returned triumphantly like this because they had cast aside their own thoughts and obeyed Abraham’s orders.
God entrusted a task to each and every one of us living on this earth. He has commanded some of us to serve the gospel at home, and others to serve it by making financial contributions while sharing in a community life. Some of us preach the gospel in front of their congregations; others support from behind with financial contributions; some of us pray; while others provide floral arrangements to make God’s Church beautiful. There are still others whom God has entrusted different tasks too, selecting some for driving the church bus and others for preparing manuscripts for our literature ministry. Indeed, the Lord has made us serve Him in various ways and forms. We should therefore serve the Lord diligently in obedience to His commandments from each of our positions, believing that all these tasks are what God has commanded us to carry out.
Our Hearts Must Be 100 Percent United with Every Task God Has Entrusted Us with
Thanks to Sarah’s complete devotion to her husband, Abraham was able to keep his life. Like this, I believe that the gospel will be preached through those who are 100 percent devoted to our Lord. To spread the Lord’s gospel fully, all of us must unite our hearts completely with the Lord and obey Him 100 percent. Only when we are completely united with the Lord and with each other can this gospel be proclaimed.
As you know very well, this work of spreading the gospel requires countless people’s labor and effort. After all, it takes many people working in unity just to make a small gadget in a factory. And just as it takes many workers’ effort to make a completed product, the proclamation of the gospel is also something that all of us must achieve in unity. The gospel of the water and the Spirit is in itself God’s gift, and therefore all that we had to do to reach our salvation was just to accept it. However, to spread this gospel to others, it requires much labor and sacrifice. Think about it. To take this gospel to everyone and plant it in everyone’s heart, just how many people would have to devote their labor, sacrifice and service?
We recently planted a branch Church in Busan, the second largest city in Korea, and through this Church, the gospel of the Lord will be preached in that city and the souls living there will receive the remission of their sins. One soul has already come into that Church and begun attending the worship service there. Although this soul still has not received the complete remission of his sins, I have every confidence that many more souls will eventually reach their salvation through our branch Church in Busan. But just to plant this small gospel seed in Busan, took a great deal of financial resources, and many hours of hard work by so many of our ministers that I can hardly describe all their labor. It’s not as though we were trying to plant a branch Church in another country far away from us, but a city that’s in our own country. Yet to preach the gospel to this city that’s so close to us, we still needed much financial resources, so many hours, and so much hard work from our saints, all of whom had to be united together for this endeavor.
When I first began to preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit, I struggled tremendously to find the right way to preach this genuine gospel. I kept asking myself, “How should I preach this gospel so that all the lost souls would receive the remission of their sins? All these countless people deserve an opportunity to hear this gospel, but how? How can I bring this opportunity to so many nations around the world? What should I do to preach the gospel to everyone around me and beyond?” At that time, I wished I had a small bus, like a minibus that seated 25 passengers. My plan was to turn the bus into a mobile library, display our gospel books in it, prepare some hot drinks, and wait for people to come in. I dreamed for the day when every truth seeker would come to this library and discover the true gospel through our books. It was my sincere desire to hand out our books for free to anyone interested in Christianity and counsel all the visitors on any matters of the gospel and theology, so that I could provide everyone with an opportunity to encounter the true gospel. God did not grant such a bus to me. However, He did grant me these members who are faithfully distributing our gospel books all over the world.
There is indeed much work for us to do. In whatever way possible, whether by running a mobile library or not, we must go to not only our neighbors but to people all over the world and preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit. But there is one thing that all of us must remember, and it is that to carry out such a task faithfully, each and every one of us must obey God 100 percent and all our faith must be united 100 percent with Him. What we need is people of faith who can say, “I will do anything for this gospel. Just as Sarah had done anything for her husband Abraham, I will also do anything and everything for the Lord. Wherever I go and whatever I do, I will do everything for the gospel and its proclamation.” Such faith and such believers are absolutely indispensable to preach the gospel.
It Is a Grave Sin to Be Blinded by Your Own Greed
It’s no ordinary sin for you to covet someone else’s possessions, for this will make you blind by your own greed. This is a grave sin and one who commits this is called Achan in the Bible. Do you know who Achan was? Achan is the man responsible for the deaths of countless Israelites when they were conquering the land of Canaan. After the people of Israel had attacked and taken control over Jericho, the Lord God had told them to bring all the riches out of the city and store them in His storehouse. Yet Achan took some treasures for himself and hid them under the carpet in his house. Because of this sin that Achan committed by allowing himself to be blinded by his own greed, God was provoked to wrath and allowed many Israelites to perish when they attacked the tiny city of Ai, and He also prevented them from taking that City.
Like this, all of us must grasp what a grave sin it is for us to follow our greed. We should realize clearly here that living for our own greed instead of the Lord is a wicked sin. In fact, even murder is nothing compared to this sin. It’s a far more wicked sin to defile and destroy even a single soul than physically murdering many people. We should all remember that to follow just our own fleshly greed rather than preaching the Lord’s gospel is the same as committing the sin of sending to hell many souls that could otherwise have gone to Heaven.
It is very wrong for any born-again believer to labor just for his own church. This means that it’s wrong for you to prioritize your own church’s needs over serving the Lord and preaching His gospel. If you have the financial means to contribute to the gospel ministry, don’t just think about spending it on your own church; instead spend it to promote the preaching of the gospel. This is the right disposition of all the righteous who trust in the Lord to have and to follow Him wholeheartedly.
I believe that this kind of disposition can emerge only if your heart is united with the Lord 100 percent. Only when your heart is fully united with God’s Church can you faithfully carry out the Lord’s work when it’s entrusted to you; if you otherwise don’t have such a united heart, then you are bound to get greedy and become obsessive over only your own material prosperity. If you and I were to seek just our own material prosperity, it would be the end of our ministry of proclaiming the gospel. If our ministry to spread the gospel seems to be in trouble, it’s all because you and I still do not have the correct faith that’s united with the Lord 100 percent; and this is also the reason why so many souls around us and all over this nation and the whole wide world still have not been truly saved. It’s all because our hearts are not united with the Lord 100 percent that so many souls are still heading for hell.
Because We Have Obeyed God
The success of our gospel ministry depends on whether or not we are completely united with the Lord. To illustrate this, take a look at our recent ministry in north-eastern China. We have been diligently preaching the gospel there, and thanks to our effort, countless souls in China have been truly saved. This is all because you and I have willingly offered our material possessions for the spreading of the gospel without any hesitation. Put differently, the gospel of the Lord has been preached so successfully in China because all of us have worked hard as commanded by the Lord in complete obedience.
Having no lingering attachment to our own material prosperity, we are now spreading the gospel further and wider throughout the whole world, and we know very well that this is because you and I have united our hearts into one before the Lord. Just as Abraham’s wife Sarah had obeyed her husband completely, we have also submitted ourselves to the Lord in complete unity, and that is why we have been able to preach the Lord’s gospel so far. Sarah did not seek her own interests but only her husband’s interests. I have no doubt that it’s also because we have sought the Lord’s interests instead of ours that we have been able to spread the gospel to this very day.
Over the course of our ministry, we have seen many workers of the Lord being raised and many souls being saved, and all these wonderful things were achieved because we had all obeyed the Lord and united our hearts before Him. If we had not done so, then you and I would not have been sitting here. After all, unless we obeyed the Lord and united our hearts with Him, none of us would even have reached our true salvation. Those who participate in the work of spreading the Lord’s gospel do not even think about spending any spare money for themselves. Even if we had billions of dollars, we would no doubt spend every cent on a truly fitting and righteous purpose—that is, to save all the souls around the whole world.
I have in fact spent a lot of money on our gospel ministry, and I will continue to do so into the future. Whenever financial resources come into the Church, the first thing I do is prepare a plan and pray to God to let me know what to do. I ponder long and hard on different ways to introduce our gospel to everyone all over the world, from the question of where to plant a branch church to how to open a Christian bookstore, whether to build a mobile library or not, when to hold revival meetings, and how to publish our books in a more efficient and effective way. Like this, I always think very hard and prepare a careful plan to spread the gospel in various ways. Of course, not all of our plans will be achieved overnight, but I am confident that they will all be achieved some day. There is nothing that I have not been able to achieve once I decided my mind on it. As I just mentioned, right after I first received the remission of my sins, I had given some thought to a mobile library. Although it still has not been fulfilled, it will surely be realized some day. I ask you to also unite your heart with mine and pray for this plan.
Our Lord wants us all to spread the gospel. So I ask you all to obey Him. It’s through those who submit themselves to the Lord 100 percent in complete unity that our God spreads His gospel on this earth. And it’s through such faithful servants that God fulfills His will. Remember that the Lord carries out His work through those who are united with their Master 100 percent just like Abraham’s wife Sarah.
Much Is Needed to Carry Out the Gospel Work
Do you know just how demanding it is to carry out the work of spreading the gospel? The gospel work indeed requires endless financial resources, countless workers, and the complete obedience of all those workers and their tireless devotion and effort. It is a tremendously demanding task.
Who will then rise up to this difficult task of spreading this precious gospel? To phrase this question in another way, where can we find someone who would become like Abraham’s wife Sarah? Such people are not far away. They are in fact right here. It may be none other than me, or it may be any of you. It’s within our gathering here that God is looking for such people. In other words, God is looking for those among us whose hearts are united with the Lord 100 percent, who serve the Lord faithfully as their Master, who are willing to forsake their lives to take the Lord’s life and His purpose as their own life and purpose, and who have thus become one heart with the Lord. It’s none other than through such people that God carries out the righteous work of Heaven, spreads the gospel, and fulfills the will of the Lord.
My fellow believers, all of us must become people who seek after God. We must all become people who are approved by God to spread the Lord’s gospel all over the world. Of course, this work of proclaiming the gospel is extremely demanding for us and requires a great deal of sacrifice. It also takes a tremendous amount of financial resources, and that is why I pray to the Lord to provide us with these resources, because they are necessary to spread His gospel. What a shame it would be if I were to instead to ask God just for my own fleshly prosperity? But that is not why I pray to God for financial resources. I pray for them because I want to serve the Lord’s gospel, so that I could indeed serve this gospel in the best way possible. Like this, someone who prays to God for financial resources to serve the Lord is a happy man. Such people who spend their material possessions for the Lord’s gospel instead of on themselves are happy people. Whoever can offer his treasures to the Lord is someone who is full of joy. In short, the truly happy people among us are those who can devote all their hearts, their bodies, their minds, their knowledge, their strength and their everything to the Lord. I ask you all to remember this clearly, that it is those who live for the Lord and the spreading of His gospel that are truly happy.
It is my sincerest hope and prayer that you and I would all become such righteous people who are united with our Lord 100 percent just like Abraham’s wife Sarah was with her husband. Is the Lord’s work somehow distinct and separate from your business? No, even when you are taking care of your business, you must also carry out the Lord’s work as His partner. You must work with the Lord no matter what you do. This means that you should be in a partnership with the Lord in all things. You ought to do whatever the Lord wants you to do. If God wants you to preach the gospel, then you should preach the gospel. I am determined to preach the gospel wherever the Lord wants me to preach it, from workplaces to schools, hospitals, penitentiaries, and theological seminaries. In fact, we are planning to visit a theological seminary soon to exhibit our gospels books and preach the gospel. It’s only because people still do not know the Lord’s gospel that so many of them remain unsaved; once they truly realize the power of the gospel, they will all believe in this gospel and be saved. Therefore, you and I should make it our purpose in life to preach the gospel to everyone and live the rest of our lives accordingly to that purpose.
We must serve the Lord in our everyday lives, not only in our homes but also at our workplaces and schools. The Lord is an unseen guest and a member of our family breaking bread with us. So I ask you to plan every aspect of your life with the Lord in a partnership, and actually carry out the proclamation of the gospel for Him in your life. If you are in a partnership with the Lord, your every endeavor will succeed. As long as you abide in the Lord, everything you do will be blessed.
But what would happen if one were to think that the Lord’s work is separate from his own business? Such people will face constant hardship in life. Everything they do will fail without exception. Abraham’s wife obeyed her husband in all things, considering him to be her master. And the just God protected her completely. When we turn to Genesis chapter 12, we can see that God protected Abraham’s wife from Pharaoh and returned her safely back to her husband. Like this, God is just to bless those who follow Him completely, and I ask you all to realize this.
Whatever You Do, Always Be in a Partnership with God
My fellow believers, whatever you do, do all things with the Lord. Let your purpose lie with the preaching of the gospel of the Lord no matter what you do. Only then can you be blessed by God. You may then wonder how your own business and your own money have anything to do with the Lord’s work. But they are all highly relevant to the Lord. That’s because as someone who has been saved by the Lord, you are to lead your life to spread the gospel. The gospel of the Lord is preached only if you are prosperous, and therefore your prosperity is an absolute must. And the only way for you to prosper is to do everything in a partnership with God. Whether you eat or drink, everything is done for the Lord. It’s for the Lord that we take our breath. Some students here may think, “What does it matter to the Lord whether I am a good student or not? It’s none of His business!” But it does matter. Everything you do matters to the Lord. And this is true for all of us, students and grown-ups alike. In short, all of us must live for the Lord every moment and every second of all the days of our lives.
Do you know who are the most foolish amongst Christians? They are the ones who refuse the Lord’s partnership. Such people will fail at everything they do and end up with nothing but an empty pocket. The Lord will take away from them even the good things that He had given them. The same is true for our ministers. Any minister who is not in a partnership with the Lord will see his Church decline. This Church might have flourished at the beginning, but as time goes by, it will not only fail to add any more souls to it but it will turn so impoverished that it won’t even be able to take care of its own members. In contrast, if this church is ready to be in a partnership with the Lord and willingly offers its financial resources to God to spread the true gospel, then amazingly it will prosper even more. The Lord will bless such a Church so abundantly that it would still be prosperous even after offering so much to the Lord. When seen from just a human point of view, we can’t help but marvel at this outcome. However, my fellow believers, this is actually nothing amazing, but a thoroughly ordinary outcome. It’s only a matter of time for you not to be blessed if you live just for yourself, but will be blessed if you live in a partnership with God according to His will.
I have come to live according to this will of the Lord—that is, to focus all my attention on spreading the Lord’s gospel. Not only should our ministers live in this way, but all the righteous who have been saved must live for this purpose of spreading the gospel. This means that all the brothers and sisters gathered here must also lead their lives for the purpose of spreading the gospel. Everything you do must therefore be done in a way that is fit for the spreading of the gospel, from the way you think to the way you act, work, and even run your business.
The Apostle Paul said, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). Do you understand what this passage means? Like every other disciple of Jesus, the Apostle Paul devoted his entire life to the proclamation of the gospel. That’s how all the saints of the Early Church had led their lives. As the righteous of this present age, if we really love the Lord and want to follow Him, then let us all live like our predecessors of faith. The righteous have been born again thanks to the Lord, and therefore, they would be betraying the Lord if they failed to live for Him.
God wants to fulfill His work through you and me. It’s then only natural for the Lord to entrust even more work to us. The Lord wants us to offer even more to Him for the sake of the gospel. So let us offer ourselves to the Lord even more. To those who live for the purpose of spreading the gospel and unite their hearts with the gospel 100 percent, the Lord will give even more and bless them to bear even more fruit. If we live like this for the purpose of preaching the Lord’s gospel, we will all flourish in happiness together with the Lord.
Only when we the born-again are united with the Lord can our lives be made happy and blessed with the Lord. That is why I am admonishing you with a completely clear conscience to unite your heart with the Lord, and I say this to myself also. You can flourish in prosperity only when you are united with the Lord. If you otherwise fail to unite yourself with the Lord, then destruction will be your end. You will be lucky if you barely make your ends meet. This is not just me cursing you on my own, but it is an undeniable principle of faith.
In contrast, if you unite yourself with the Lord and live your everyday life for the purpose of spreading the gospel for the Lord’s sake, then far from just getting by, you will live such a prosperous life that you will be able to share your prosperity with others and still flourish. This is something I have learned since I met the Lord. It is the incontrovertible truth. Think about it yourself. If our brothers and sisters gathered here were to live a stingy life just for themselves, then they would indeed turn into misers. What would then happen if they were to instead unite their hearts with the Lord, offer their everything to Him, and seek to live for the Lord even though they have not been given much, like the widow who offered two mites as recorded in Mark 12:42? God will surely give and bless even more all such saints, such righteous people, and such servants. He will glorify them even more and fill them even more. Do you also believe like this?
I have never actually counted $100,000 in cash. But to my mind even $1 trillion is not such a huge sum. I could offer trillions and quadrillions of dollars to the Lord and still feel that I have not offered Him enough. For everyone all over the world to receive the remission of their sins, no amount of offering can be enough. Even if I were to offer this entire world to the Lord, I would still feel it’s not enough. But at the same time, I have every faith that our Lord will provide us with all the necessary financial resources to carry out our gospel ministry.
My fellow believers, it is absolutely crucial for us to live for the purpose of spreading the Lord’s gospel. Each and every one of us must live in this way without any exception. Only then will you live a prosperous and happy life and see all your worries disappear. All of us can be happy only if we unite our hearts with the Lord, submit ourselves to Him, and proclaim the gospel according to His will. Do you believe the same?
Whatever you do, whether you eat or drink, do everything for the glory of God and to preach His gospel. What is God’s glory? It is for every soul to receive the remission of their sins. Therefore, as we have already received the remission of our sins and become righteous people, to fulfill this glory of God, we must spread the gospel to every nation and every tribe in the whole wide world. Each and every one of us gathered here, young and old, men and women, and laypeople and ministers alike, must believe that this is our calling.
If any of us were to live just for ourselves or only our own church, then such people’s consequence will be their own destruction. I cannot emphasize enough just how imperative it is for us to live for the Lord. I pray to the Lord for material prosperity because even though I yearn to spend so much money on the work of spreading the gospel, to do what the Lord wants for His sake, I don’t have enough money. And whatever money I come across, I entrust it all to the work of the Lord, just as He said, “Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (Matthew 6:20). I ask you to do the same. Have the complete confidence that our ministers never squander any of your offerings but spend them all for the precious work of the Lord.
Lately we have been swamped by so many printing needs that we are thinking of purchasing our own printing press. To share our books with the whole world, we also need a fast and effective means of transportation. So I am even thinking of purchasing an airplane. This may seem like a tall order, but everything is possible if we have faith. So I have been praying to the Lord as the following: “Lord, I am willing to do anything if it’s for the gospel. I am willing to buy not only a printing press but even an airplane, if that’s for the preaching of Your gospel. If it’s for the gospel, I will gladly offer my whole life to You.”
I want our Lord to answer us and fulfill all our dreams. And I believe with all my heart that the Lord will indeed answer us.