He Is Risen

He is risen, a three word statement that is so profound and carrying huge implications. Because if Jesus was not resurrected from the dead, as the great Apostle Paul said, in 1 Cor 15:14, “And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.”

13132In essence, if the resurrection of Christ did not occur then, our ministry, faithful enduring, acts of love and preaching of the Gospel is useless and empty. It would all be for nought, if this event never took place. Why? Because firstly, it would mean that Jesus was wrong and he lied, when he claimed that he would rise from the dead on the third day. If this is the case then we can not trust anything that he said or did, or the veracity of the Bible. Thus, there’s no point in believing Him. Secondly, if Jesus did not rise then, there may be no resurrection for anybody else, including his followers.

Thus, if we simply disappear and no longer exist after death, then there is no perfect judgement and no ultimate accountability for the life that we have lived. If we are not having to be accountable to the ultimate Judge, then it makes no difference in the end if we obey God or disobey, if we sin or live a good life, we all just disappear and everyone’s end result is the same, nothing.

This certainly makes for a horribly bleak and miserable prospect but the Good News however is that the resurrection of Jesus is one of the most provable events in history.

Dr. Simon Greenleaf, Royall Professor of Law at Harvard University said, “There is more evidence for the historical fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ than for just about any other event in history.”

The weight of evidence of the resurrection of Christ is overwhelming when examined, and since He did rise again, it means we can take Him at His Word because not one jot or tittle shall be passed from his Word until it’s fulfilled. We can also take courage that our lives here on earth counts towards our eternal reward. When we obey God’s Word, we can trust that we receive God’s gift of salvation. Let us walk in the newness of life and victory wrought through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, receiving God’s abundant life here on earth and everlasting life to come!

This is a blog post from Stanley Harvey, the Senior Pastor of the Pentecostals of Sydney.

Miracles

I love this time of the year, though it can be stressful and costly, yet there is something about this season that to the Christian, should be about more than just food and festivities.

Nativity

While it is true that the exact dates for the Birth of Christ is a point of contention, nevertheless this amazing event is clearly detailed in the New Testament and it ought to be something that the Church considers deeply and indeed rejoices over. It is still one of the most remarkable and miraculous stories… of how an all-powerful Deity and Creator of the Universe, a Being who transcends this physical world, entered as a man and dwelt among sinful humanity.

The nativity of Jesus Christ is inexplicably miraculous with a young virgin Mary being impregnated by the Holy Spirit; conceiving and giving birth to the promised Messiah, the Immanuel (God with us). What is encouraging to us is that God still performs this same kind of miracle today, in that He enters our lives through the infilling of the Holy Spirit to anyone who desires to have Jesus Christ in their lives.

MiraclesThis is a true miracle in itself and the people of the Pentecostals of Sydney give attestation to this truth that a sinner, thief, liar, drug addict, alcoholic, idolater or atheist could be transformed to become a Spirit-filled, born again, baptised in Jesus name, child of God. In addition to the miracle of a life transformed, God still heals, delivers, provides, empowers, anoints and saves miraculously. He is a miracle working God and we can believe and expect for God to enter our lives miraculously in so many ways.

This month, as the year comes to a close, let the door of your heart be opened to Jesus Christ so that He may work a miracle in your life.

Matthew 1:23 – Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

This is a blog post from Stanley Harvey, the Senior Pastor of the Pentecostals of Sydney.

Turning Point

It is hard to believe that we’ve been back in our newly renovated Church building for almost a year now. What a blessing it has been over that time but here we are again at this juncture.

Perhaps one of the concepts that we often fail to fully appreciate is God’s relationship with ‘Time’ or how He willingly yields to and utilises time, particularly in his dealings with man. Many have asked the question as to why God took so long to bring redemption to the world through Jesus Christ. Why did God not send him the moment that Adam and Eve sinned but waited a couple of thousand years to send Abraham, then waited another 500 years to bring the law through Moses, then another 1,500 years till Jesus Christ finally came? Even with that, God allowed Jesus to grow through the normal progression of life from infancy, childhood, adolescence and adulthood to where, after thirty three years, He fulfilled his work of redemption for all mankind. While He is always at work throughout history and time, yet these acts of God’s grace seemed to be spaced out over extended periods.

There are many possible explanations for this question of God’s time, none of which stand out to me as an absolutely definitive one since they all seem to point back to the same agonising truth that can sometimes engender more questions than answers. The agonising truth may be: that for reasons only God knows. Some may call this a ‘cop out’, a crux, or a default answer to anything unanswerable, yet it remains entirely possible and in my conviction true.

One thing is certain, God works in time both in the Kronos, or chronology of time, and Kairos, God’s appointed time. He created the universe and nature with time in mind. Plants, animals, the earth with seasons and days are designed to grow and change in a procession locked within this inextricable dimension. God’s dealings with us are no different. Perhaps God is allowing time to bring maturity in our lives. Maybe that is why we haven’t received the answers to our prayers yet or perhaps why things haven’t turned out the way we want yet, for reasons that only the All-Knowing and Wise God knows.

So trust in Him during periods of delay and make use of the time that God has given you right now, to know what He wants for you and expects of you. At Turning Point this year, don’t see this as just another date on the calendar but this could be God’s appointed time for your breakthrough, deliverance and transformation. It could be your family or friends’ time for salvation. Be ready, for now, it is high time.

See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. Ephesians 5:15-17

This is a blog post from Stanley Harvey, the Senior Pastor of the Pentecostals of Sydney.

Pentecost

The Day of Pentecost signaled the inauguration of the Church of Jesus Christ as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. After Christ had ascended to heaven, his disciples waited in earnest for the promise of the Holy Spirit that would bring empowerment, comfort and guidance. Sure enough, on that God-ordained day, after ten days of tarrying in prayer, the Spirit of God burst dramatically into the Upper room, filling all that were present with his Spirit.

This experience was so energizing to the once timid disciples that the immediate consequence of their Spirit-infilling was that it be taken outside the upper room. Others in the city heard of, and witnessed, this incredible phenomenon of speaking in tongues and prophesying. After the emboldened Peter preached the first Pentecostal sermon, 3,000 souls were converted receiving the same experience.

The Church was born in a dynamic, powerful and supernatural manner nearly two thousand years ago. But there is absolutely no reason why the Church of the Living God could not experience the same divine intervention. But on the contrary, I believe that this Pentecostal experience and Apostolic message is to be expected and a characteristic of the true Church of Jesus Christ. We must pray not only for Pentecost revisited but Pentecost exceeded. Before His return, in order to reach 7 billion people on this planet, the challenge is for the Church to tarry in prayer, fasting with desire and unity of the Body of Christ to see this come to pass in a greater measure. We are seeing pockets of unprecedented revival all over the world but we need more of it, in every corner of the globe.

The word ‘Pentecost’ simply means fiftieth as it was fifty days after Passover. It also coincided with both the Jewish ‘Feast of Weeks’ and ‘Feast of Harvest.’ One commemorated the giving of the law through Moses and the other signified the first fruits of the harvest of crops.

Similarly, Pentecost initiated the New Testament harvest of souls with the ‘first-fruits’ being filled with the Spirit of God and the revelation of the plan of salvation in Acts 2:38. This being: Repentance, Baptism in the name of Jesus Christ and the infilling of the Holy Spirit.

We need both the Pentecostal experience and the Apostolic message that ensures we have the same experience and the same doctrine as that of the Apostles of Jesus. And if it was good enough for Peter, Paul, James, John and the other disciples, then it is good enough for me. Pentecost is not just another denomination in the world, neither is it an imitation of the Christian church but as far as the Word of God is concerned, it is THE Church of Jesus Christ. Be a part of it today.

This is a blog post from Stanley Harvey, the Senior Pastor of the Pentecostals of Sydney.