Presence, Protection, Provision (Genesis 28:18-22) by Ptr Xley Miguel

A wedding is a, is truly a celebration of the union of two people who love one another. In a wedding, there are important parts of the ceremony. Most important part in my opinion is the gospel presentation but also, the second, second to that is the exchanging of vows, that’s one of my favourite parts as well. There’s this thing when they, the two, the couple will share, will give their vows to one another, will exchange vows, promises, oaths. Usually if the woman shares her vow, eto yung usual kong naririning sa mga babae.. “I am marrying my best friend.” That’s the usual thing that I hear from the vows. Nothing wrong with that, you can use that if you’re gonna get married. Wala pong prublema doon. I’m just saying usual siya, ‘no. Sa mga lalaki naman, ang usual kong naririnig, eto, um… “I will work to provide for you, I will protect you, I will protect our marriage and I will be with you.” Ayan ang mga usual vow ng lalaki sa wedding ceremony.

It is like in Genesis chapter 28 when God appeared in a dream, God promised Jacob three specific things. His presence, protection and provision. Turn with me to Genesis chapter 28 verses 18 to 22. So early in the morning Jacob took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. He called the name of that place Bethel, but the name of the city was Luz at the first. Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat and clothing to wear, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, then the Lord shall be my God, and this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, shall be God’s house. And of all that you give me I will give a full tenth to you.” The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of God will stand forever.

As you know, Jacob was on his way to Paddan-aram as commanded by his father Isaac to find for himself a wife. And God while he was journeying, Jacob slept of course napagod si Jacob. God appeared to him in a dream. In that dream, God showed Himself and He reiterated the covenant that He had, God, He had with with Jacob’s father, Abraham, and also Isaac. It’s basically the same promise, the same covenant that God has given to Abraham and then transferred in a sense to, uh, to Isaac, and then now being reiterated also to, to his son, Jacob. What, what is this covenant? What is this promise that God is giving? That God will be with Jacob. So God promised His presence to be with Jacob. Ano pa? That He will keep Jacob wherever he goes.

God promised protection for Jacob. What else? That He will provide many descendants, that He will provide the land that Jacob will indeed return to the land. We see their God also promising provisions. And it is important that Jacob would be reminded of the same covenant, because in the next chapters, chapter 29 to 30, you will see Jacob meeting Laban, the the brother of his mother Rebekah, who is the father of his future wife, wives, in fact Rachel, Leah and her, and their servants, and of course unbeknownst to Jacob, akala niya siguro, saglit lang siya doon sa, kina Laban. In fact, aabutin siya ng 20 years. 20 years. Of course unknown pa kay Jacob during this time. 20 years away from his family. He’s away from his father, Isaac away from his mother, Rebekah. 20 years outside of the land of the covenant community. This is why on his way, God has shown Himself to Jacob in a dream. Before he goes there, Jacob was assured of what God did to Abraham, of what God did to Isaac, that God was indeed faithful to them. Before Jacob goes there to Laban, Jacob was reminded also of what his duties were in the covenant. It was very important for God to show Himself and remind Jacob, o. Yung pupuntahan mo, in fact hindi mo alam 20 years ka doon. Pero very important na maalala mo itong promise ko, I will be with you, I will keep you wherever you go and I will provide for you many descendants and this land. That is also what I told your fathers Abraham and Isaac. I told them that and I indeed were protected them and I was with them, my presence was with them and I also provided them many descendants, you, you’re one of the descendants and also this land. So Jacob, it is very important that you know this, so that you will be ready, so that you will be faithful as you go to Laban and look for your wife. Not only that, oh yes you will be reminded Jacob of my faithfulness, my faithfulness toward your fathers, Abraham and Isaac, that’s what I did, that’s what I will do to you. I’m telling you this so that you will be reminded also of your duty that you have a covenant with Me. You also have a duty to keep this covenant, to live a life that is glorifying in My eyes.That’s basically what God was saying. And of course, once he, he, after the dream, he woke up, Jacob woke up, verse 20 onwards it says, then Jacob made a vow because of the division, because of the, the, the reminder of the covenant that he had with God. Jacob made the vow when he woke up. He said if God will be with me and will keep me in this way that I go, it’s basically repeating what God had said. And will give me bread to eat and clothing to wear, provisions, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, kung makakabalik ako kay Isaac ng safe, then the Lord shall be my God and this stone which I have set up for a pillar shall be God’s house, and of all that you give me I will give a full tenth to you. Itong batong inilagay ko dito, eto’y magiging lugar kung saan i-wo-worship ang Panginoon. Now you have to understand that they are, they were in a covenant, agreement. And it’s a covenant where in two parties must keep their end of the bargain in a sense. Jacob was under a “do this and live-principle.” God pledges, here’s what I will do. And we see here in verses 20 onwards, Jacob was doing the same, okay. So this means that Jacob wasn’t trying to bargain, he’s not saying oh God I will only do this if you do this to me huh. He’s not saying that. He recognises the responsibilities of the two parties in that covenant. In fact, he’s saying that he’s making a vow because he was confident in the Lord because of what God has done to his fathers Abraham and Isaac. Oh he knows that this is what God will do, hence I will return and I will set up this pillar and make this the house of God. Jacob knew that he must keep his end of the covenant because God has been faithful to his fathers Isaac and Abraham. He knew that God will be faithful in His word to him as well. Parang sinasabi ng Diyos, Jacob, malalayo ka sa iyong pamilya. For you to be ready, for you to be more faithful, you need to remember what I’m saying to you. In fact, this is what you need in your journey. In fact that’s a very long time, 20 years? What you need Jacob, what you need primarily, My work, My promise, that I will be with you, I will provide for you and I will protect you.

Now how about us? Just as Jacob was journeying and God assured

him of His presence, of His protection, of His provision by reiterating the covenant. Does God also give us such assurance in this journey of life the answer is yes the difference is that God’s Assurance in this journey of life? The answer is yes! The difference is that God’s assurance is seen not in what is to come. I mean in our context now, yung assurance ng Diyos ay hindi yung ano yung parating, kundi ano yung dumating. What has already come, what has been accomplished. That He sent His, His son, Jesus Christ to accomplish the redemption of many by His perfect life, by His substitutionary sacrificial death on the cross, by His resurrection from the dead, that is the gospel. Just as God reminded Jacob during his journey, bago siya dumating ng Paddan- aram or Haran, eto kailangan mo, My promises..tayo din while we are pilgrims on this earth, what we need during this journey of life is none other than the promise of God, promise that was accomplished, fulfilled in the gospel. We need to be reminded of that always so that we can be reminded of how faithful God is and at the same time of our duties as christians. Parang si Jacob, na-remind siya ng faithfulness ni God, and yung duty niya. Kaya nga siya nag-vow. So message ko para sa lahat ngayong hapon, God delights to give us His promises in the gospel, to give us the gospel to remind us of His faithfulness and our duties. God wants to shower us all His blessings in the gospel, to remind us of how faithful He is. But also to remind you brother, sister, of your duty as a believer, as a follower of Christ.

So in this passage, we see how the covenant that Jacob had with with God is a fulfilment, is rather, pointing to a fulfilment. And that is my first point FULFILMENT OF THE OLD COVENANT. And also the better covenant is something na in-e-experience na natin ngayon. It’s not the same covenant that Jacob had with, with God before. It is in fact a newer one, and that is my second point EXPERIENCE IN THE NEW COVENANT.

Let us consider my first point, FULFILMENT IN THE OLD COVENANT. So God here is giving Jacob again the same covenant that He gave to his fathers, Abraham and Isaac. That’s why God reiterated, sinabi ng Panginoon in Genesis chapter 28 I am the God of your father Abraham, I am the God of Isaac, and I’m gonna give you words, the same words that I’ve, I’ve, I’ve given Abraham many, many years ago, 20 plus years ago, more than 20 years in fact. So this covenant is given also to Jacob. In fact this also extends even to the sons of Jacob to Israel. And so when God, in this promise, the nature of this promises, let’s look at them. So when God promises in the covenant that He will provide many descendants, well, actually nagka-totoo na iyon, na-fulfil na iyon ng Panginoon. When He said in Genesis chapter 12 to Abraham well, I will give you many descendants, and then Genesis chapter 15, sinabi Niya, I’ll give you many descendants, kasing dami ng stars sa labas.

Genesis chapter 17, inulit uli ng Panginoon kay Abraham, oh, I’ll give you descendants. In fact, it has been fulfilled. Ito’y na-fulfil, sinasabi sa First Kings.. you don’t need to go there, I will read to you the text First Kings chapter 4 verse 20 it says Israel were as many as the sand by the sea. It has been fulfilled, nangyari na! God promised Abraham, Isaac, now Jacob that they will have many descendants, oh God fulfilled that. It became true. So God provided. And also in that covenant, God promised, sinabi Niya, that He will give a land. In fact, na-fulfil na din ito in Joshua chapter 21 verse 43. Let me read to you the text, it says Thus the Lord gave to Israel all the land that he swore to give to their fathers. And they took possession of it, and they settled there.

Very clear, explicitly said there that God has fulfilled His promise to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob. He gave them the land, Israel through the leadership of Joshua experienced the fulfilment of what God, what, of what God promised even from, in the time of Abraham. So ang ibig sabihin, yung provision ng Panginoon, ng descendants and land, finulfil Niya. But also, mayroon pang ibang promise ang Panginoon. God promised presence. God promised His presence that He will be there with His people, that He will be with Abraham, Isaac and even Jacob and even the Israelites. And God was with them. Remember the time of Israel? They were given the privilege to build a tabernacle so that God can dwell with them. And then in the time of the monarchs, kings, they built a temple in Jerusalem, that is also the dwelling place of God. They have the privilege of having the presence and the glory of God. Israel had that. So God fulfilled that promise already for the physical line of Israel, of Jacob. Hindi lang iyon. Nakita natin sa text, God promised protection. Sinabi Niya kay Jacob, Jacob, babalik ka kay Isaac. You will be back, you will be back with your family. And he went back after 20 years. Not only that, his descendants, remember, they had a covenant with God also. They, they owned the land of Canaan, Israel. But because of their rebellion, they were kicked out, they were exiled to Babylon. But because God is gracious, bumalik pa rin sila, they went back. God again fulfilled what He has promised even in the time of Abraham. So ibig sabihin, makita natin ang faithfulness ng Panginoon dito. Yung sinasabi Niya kay Jacob, if we read the entire Bible, in fact Old Testament pa lang, hindi pa tayo aabot ng New Testament, nakita na natin ang faithfulness ng Panginoon. He has fulfilled these promises to them. But see, we can say that God indeed has, is, has been faithful in His promises, faithful to His promises to Jacob and even to the Israelites. But we can also say that the land of Canaan and the many physical descendants, the, the presence of God there through the temple and tabernacle, the protection of God for the Israelites, these things are not the ultimate fulfilment of these promises. In fact, the reason why God chose Abraham, the reason why God chose Isaac and Jacob and the Israelites, Israelites, it is because it is through them that the Messiah, the True Promised Son will come.

The Promised Son dated back pa sa time ni Adam, yan ay fulfilled sa mga, si Christ ang fulfilment ng mga promises na binibigay Niya kay Jacob sa ating binasa. The one promised even in the time of the fall is the, is the ultimate fulfilment of these promises, that is none other than Jesus Christ. Siya ang True Fulfilment ng mga ito. Siya ang Totoong Presensiya ng Panginoon, Siya ang Totoong Protection ng People of God, SIya ang Totoong Provision ng Diyos…Siya! And so when God promised His presence, Jacob I will be with you, it means also that in Christ, we see we see the presence of God. That’s what Paul said.

Colossians chapter 2 verse 9 he said For in him, in Christ, the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily. Kitang-kita ang Presensiya ng Panginoon. Why? For He is God. He is the dwelling place of God, He is the Temple of God, the Tabernacle of God. And apart from Him, you are outside of the temple, you are outside of the tabernacle, you are outside of the presence of God. And so when God promised His protection to Jacob saying, Jacob I will keep you wherever you go, I will protect you.

Remember in the time of Israel, they were really protected from enemies. But now, this means knowing that Christ is really the ultimate fulfilment of this, it means that in Jesus Christ, Christ is our protection from greater enemies. Israel was protected from his enemies, Edomites. In fact even some of the Babylonians, Assyrians, although sinalakay sila, but really, na-protektahan pa rin yung line ng Israel.

When we’re saying, when we say that Christ is the Fulfilment of this, kung ikaw ay na kay Kristo, protektado ka from greater enemies than the Babylonians.

What greater enemies are we referring to? These are sins. Your sin, this is death. You can’t defeat death. No one can defeat death apart from Christ. What else? The enemy, satan. And only Christ is your protection because on the cross He has defeated these three. Sin, yes, He lived perfectly, death, He rose from the dead and satan on the cross, it was the, it was Him crushing the head of satan on that cross.

And so when God promised His provision, ang sinabi Niya kay Jacob, Jacob I will give you many descendants and this land will be yours. Ultimately, kung sabihin natin si Kristo talaga fulfilment noon, and He is, Christ is our greatest provision. And we have better promises, better provisions in Christ. Hindi lang materyal, kundi, espiritwal. Hindi ko sinasabing yayaman tayo ngayong materyal. We have everything in Jesus Christ primarily, spiritually. When He returns, oh yes materially because we will be in the new heaven and the new earth. For in Him comes better spiritual provisions in Christ, we have every spiritual blessing in heavenly places. So you see, God’s promises of presence, protection and provision are all fulfilled in Jesus Christ. This is why if you are not in Christ, then again, you are outside of God. Again, you are not protected from these enemies, sin death and satan. You do not have God’s provision. And you won’t be able to accomplish these things because you’re not a sinless person. Only Christ was able to accomplish these things and He is The Promised Presence Protection And Provision For Us. Mga kapatid, yan ang meron sa isang taong walang paniniwala sa Panginoong Hesukristo, na hindi nagsu- submit sa Kaniyang Lordship. Kaya kung ikaw ay outside of God, ikaw ay ine-enjoy mo ang mga atake ng kasalanan, ng kalaban, walang spiritual battle na nangyayari, in fact, you enjoy it, you just freely accept them. Mag-repent ka na sa iyong mga kasalanan and come to faith in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But if you are in Christ brethren, just as Jacob who was journeying, we too who are in this journey of life and just as God knows what Jacob truly needed while he was away, God, too, knows what we all truly need while we are here on earth, and that is none other than the gospel. And so my brethren, we must be satisfied in Christ alone. Dapat ma-satisfy tayo doon sa promise ng Panginoon na probisyon, proteksyon at Presensiya Niya. Wala nang iba. Wala nang ibang dapat mas makaka-satisfy sa atin kundi si Panginoong Hesukristo lamang. Kaya ang challenge ko sa lahat is to BE SATISFIED IN CHRIST FOR HE IS IN US. God, God dwells in us because of Christ. He is our protection and our provision. The problem is this – because of sin, we want to live as if we are outside of the presence of God. We want to live entertaining the temptations of satan and his rulers and authorities. We are opening up our lives to sin. Tayo na mismo ang lumalapit sa kasalanan. We want to live our lives as if we don’t have everything. But see in Christ, you can enjoy God’s presence. We have that assurance that God is in us, God is with us and that we are protected from sin. It means that we can be enabled to fight sin to flee from temptation, that’s what protection means here on earth. And we will have full protection when Christ returns. We will see His presence and His presence means absence of sin. That’s what we have in Christ and God truly delights in giving you these truths, in giving you the gospel, to remind you of His faithfulness. Hindi ba’t sa kahirapan ng buhay dahil sa kasalanan, napaka-gandang mapa- alalahanan tayo na kung anong meron tayo bilang mga kristiyano. In our battle against sin brethren, remember you are not of the world.

You are not of the world. You come here every Sunday dala-dala yung

burden, sobrang bigat ng kasalanan and then ang maririnig mo, ay hindi, alam mo, “wala ka sa Diyos eh! Hindi ka ligtas!” Pero yung mapa-alalahanan ka na hindi, anak ka ng Diyos! Kung ikaw ay may pananampalataya kay Kristo, anak ka ng Diyos! Therefore yung burden na binubuhat mo ngayon, kayang buhatin yan ng buong church! Kay Kristo, kaya itong tanggalin.

So be satisfied in Christ alone. You are not of this world anymore. You are not in the realm of sin anymore. God is present in your life for the Holy Spirit indwells you. And when Christ returns, you will, you will enjoy the fullness of His presence. Brethren, you are protected in Christ. It means you can always run to Him as your Refuge, as your strength, as your Shield. The one who conquered sin and death, doon ka lamang makakatakbo. Unless you have a different idol and whoever that is, hindi niya cinonquer ang sin and death. Si Kristo lamang ang may kakayanan nito. Therefore you can only run to Christ. And that’s what we have in Christ, protection. It’s an unlimited protection for a christian, in fact. The one who crushed the head of the serpent on the cross is your protection.

Not only that, Christ is our provision. In fact, if you are in Christ, you may feel so poor in this earthly life. But Paul is saying we are rich in Christ. But he’s not referring to material riches. He’s referring to spiritual riches. And the basis of you being rich in Christ is because Christ became poor who, Christ, who had glory in heaven, became poor, so that we can be rich, spiritually rich in Jesus Christ.

He is our provision. You have everything in Christ. You have every spiritual blessings in the heavenly places and all these spiritual blessings are infinite in value, mga kapatid. Why? Because Christ Our provision, our provision is infinite in value. All you need is Christ. Hindi yung Beatles na song..All you need Is Christ. Be satisfied in Jesus Christ, brethren.

If you’ve read The Screwtape Letters written by C.S Lewis, mayroong nag-uusap doon. In fact, parang discipleship ‘no ng dalawang demonyo. So the senior demon said to the younger demon sabi niya “the simplest way is to turn their gaze away from Christ toward themselves,” end quote. That’s it. Tat’s the most effective way for a demon to really lure someone into wickedness. Ilayo mo raw siya, yung kanyang gaze palayo kay Kristo. Sa tingin niyo ba ang buhay niyo ngayon ay medyo lumalayo tayo? Nangyayari naman yan kahit sa totoong kristiyano. Pero mga kapatid, ngayon, tinatawag kayo ng Panginoon natin..Be satisfied in Him. Turn to Him, run to your, run to the presence of God, run to the protection from God, run to God’s provision who is Christ alone. Do we appreciate the fact that Christ is all that we need in every area of our life? Do you doubt your place in the kingdom of God? Brethren, Christ is your assurance that we are the children of God. Christ is in us, we are in Him. That’s the beauty of it.. that our assurance does not depend on ours but Christ’s. Do you struggle with sin? Do you struggle with the thought of being defeated by sin? Christ is your protection, for on the cross He has defeated our enemies. And does your heart yearn for more earthly and material things, and you are satisfied by earthly things? Remember Christ is God’s provision for us. He is all our souls’ need. Be satisfied in Him alone, brethren. My last point is EXPERIENCE IN THE NEW COVENANT.

So we see in the text verse 20 onwards that Jacob made a vow that we, that he will keep his covenant with God. Gagawin ko ito Panginoon. Alam kong gagawin Mo iyan, yung pinromise mo, eto rin po ang gagawin ko dahil tayo ay mayroong tipan. But the question here is, perpekto ba si Jacob? In fact ang question dito, talaga bang na-keep ni Jacob yung covenant niya sa Diyos perfectly? Oh we know Hebrews chapter 11, isa po si Jacob sa mga heroes of faith. Scriptures acknowledge the faithfulness of Jacob, yes. But that does not mean that he is sinless. It means that he, too, has broken his covenantal relationship with God. Paano naman yung mga descendants ni Jacob?

Yung Israel? Did they also keep their covenant with God perfectly?

Again the answer to this ay no! Kaya nga, kaya nga ang old covenant, yung “do this and live principle” ay wala na. Kasi wala ni isang maka- perfectly keep ng covenant nila sa Diyos. So anong ginawa ng Diyos?

Pinadala Niya na ang Kaniyang Anak, His only begotten son, Jesus Christ who brings with Him a better and newer covenant who is able to perfectly obey all the precepts of God, unlike the people of old. And in this new covenant, the people of God is not anymore under the “do this and live principle.” Rather, the people of God is now under a “live and do this, live because Christ has done it for us therefore do this do His precepts. Obey His precepts. And so as christians, the reason why we are receiving God’s presence, the reason why we are receiving God’s provision and protection because Someone else kept the covenant. Someone else kept His end of the bargain. Jesus is the true and better Abraham. He is the true and better Isaac He is the true and better Jacob. In fact He is also the true and better Israel for He never sinned and because of this, He has attained all that was promised by God. So sinabi natin kanina na Christ is The Promised Presence, He Is The Promised Protection, He Is The Promised Provision. But also He was in fact the reason why the promise is fulfilled. Because of His obedience. Hindi lang Siya ang pinromise na Presensiya, Proteksyon at Probisyon, Siya rin ang dahilan kung bakit lahat nang ito ay fulfilled.

Siya yung Promise at Siya yung naka-accomplish nung Promise, si

Kristo. At dahil na-accomplish Niya ang mga bagay na ito, para Siyang si Jacob. Nanggaling kay Jacob yung mga Israelites, yung many descendants, physical descendants.Pero si Kristo ay parang Jacob din in a sense, but a better one dahil hindi physical descendants ang nanggaling sa Kaniya. Oh he had many descendants, he has many descendants also, as many as the sand of the sea. Matthew chapter 28 verse 18 sabi dito And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. You know what’s next? The next passage tells us that He is commanding the apostles by the power of Christ to build the church. He builds the better people of God. He builds the better Israel. Israel comes from Jacob. The better Israel, the church, comes from Christ. And it is also in the church where God’s promise is fulfilled.Ang sinabi ng Panginoon kay Jacob – your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south and in you and your offspring shall all the families of the earth will be blessed. Iyon yung na-accomplish ni Christ. Siya yung pinromise na Presence, Protection, Provision. Siya rin yung gumawa ng, Siya yung sumunod sa Panginoon so that this will be fulfilled and in His obedience, He is building a better descendants, spiritual descendants that is, and that is the church. Isa ito sa mga accomplishments in Christ. And so the reason why we have gatherings now, dahil accomplishment ito ni Christ. We have been redeemed by Christ, this is instituted by Christ, built by Christ because of what He has done. Because of His obedience. Hindi ito kayang gawin ni Abraham. Hindi ito kayang gawin ni Isaac.

Hindi nga ito kayang gawin ni Jacob at ng Israel kundi si Kristo lamang. So we can say also that in the church, ganito pa ang ginawa ng Panginoon. Siya yung ultimate fulfilment ng promise ng Panginoon na Presence, Provision at Protection in these spiritual descendants that He has, He extends the same… Protection, Promise And Protection, these things also can be experienced in His body, in the church. And so my last challenge for everyone, Receive Genuine Assurance, Experience Presence, Protection And Provision Of Christ Inside The Church And Be Faithful In Your Involvement Here.

Mga kapatid, ultimately, etong tatlong letter “P” na ito, pointing ito kay Kristo. Siya lamang ang Probisyon, Proteksyon at ang Presensiya ng Panginoon. But also He extends it as well to the church. In order for us to experience this, He instituted His spiritual descendants, the church, para ma-experience ng bawat isa. Brethren, in the church, receive genuine assurance of His presence for Christ said that He will be with the church to the end of the age, for the spirit dwells in the gathered church. In the church we are also protected, for Christ makes the church the ark of safety. The gospel which is preached in the church, the fellowship, the gathering of the saints safeguards you from the world. In the church we receive Christ weekly. We receive Christ so that our faith would grow and we would want to receive Christ also daily because of the weekly reception of Christ. And brethren be faithful as well in your involvement here so that you would experience what was promised to us. So see, we also long for these fulfillments, but at the same time He allows the church for us to experience these promises as well. At kung wala ka sa church, then yes, the the answer is you cannot, hindi mo ma-ma-maximize itong experience na ito, na presensiya ng Panginoon, ng proteksyon ng Panginoon at ng probisyon ng Panginoon. Because the local church is the natural avenue where the people of God are fed on a Sunday. Dito talaga tayo pinapakain ng Panginoon, hindi sa labas ng church. Dito tayo protected. Dito natin

na-e-experience ang presensiya ng Panginoon, hindi sa ibang lugar. At

nandito ang probisyon. Salita ng Diyos, dito pini-preach para sa ating kalakasan. Ang prublema dito, of course if we don’t want church. If we have a mindset na si Christ lang ang kailangan ko, si Christ lang ang pinunta ko rito, hindi ko kailangan ng church. Of course may error dun sa sinabi natin kasi walang, hindi dichotomy yun. Okay na akong walang involvement sa church, christian naman na ako. There’s something wrong there because Christ instituted this. There’s an error there because if we say we want to follow Christ, we also say we don’t want to follow Christ. Because it is in the church where He makes us experience His provision, protection and His presence. Again, makikita rin natin sa church yung parang relationship ni Jacob at ng Diyos.

Meron parang covenant, yung covenant relationship din na ang Diyos ay nag-pledge kay Jacob. In a sense, ang Panginoon, every Lord’s day, nagpi-pledge din ang Panginoon sa atin. Hindi Siya gumagawa ng bagong covenant, but He’s reminding us, reiterating to us His covenant that we had, that He had with us in Jesus Christ. And in a sense as well, para rin tayong si Jacob na nag-vo-vow tayo na hindi tayo gumagawa ng bagong covenant with God, but we are in a sense renewing our commitment to the covenant that we have in Christ. We are renewing our commitment to the Lord when we worship Him, when we listen to Him, when we say Amen to Him, we’re in a sense renewing our commitment to His covenant. When we sing praises to Him, when we partake, when one is baptized, that is a declaration of one’s commitment to the Lord. And para magpatuloy yung commitment na iyon through the Lord’s Supper every week, you are renewing your commitment to the Lord when you partake, you’re saying oh Lord, in the next week, I will live a life glorifying to You. That is what you’re saying. You’re living a life in conformity to Christ, that’s what you’re saying when you’re partaking. There’s a pledging and there is a renewal of commitment. Hindi totoo yung re-commitment na kailangan mo magpa-baptise uli. Ang baptism ay isang beses lang sa isang kristiyano. Kung gusto nating ma-re-commit ang isang tao, siya dapat ay mag- partake ng weekly Lord’s Supper, that’s re-commitment. So, get brethren, friends, that Christ has ordained the church for us to experience His presence, provision and protection. In fact sabi nga ni Mark Dever and I quote he said “perhaps you’ve never considered it but the gospel is not just about how God saves us from the dominion of darkness. It is also a message about how God saves us into the kingdom of the Son He loves. A kingdom bustling with other redeemed sinners who, like us, are now citizens of heaven.” and quote. Church is important because it is where we experience these promises, presence protection and provision. God specially dwells in the gathered church, not in another place. God graciously protects us in the church when your burdens are being carried by your brother, when your burdens are being carried by a sister in Christ. When you are helped by your brethren, you are experiencing the protection of Christ. You are experiencing the extended hands of Christ. God blesses us with spiritual provisions in Christ in the church. It is only in the gathered church where Christ speaks to us through His word by the power of the Holy Spirit. So question ko sa lahat, may effect ba sa iyo ang mga salita ng Diyos? Kung oo, that proves the presence of God in the church. You benefit from the ministry of the brethren. If yes, that proves the protection of God in Christ. Do you experience the richness of the blessings communicated to you every Lord’s day? If yes, that proves the provision of God in Christ in the local church So brethren, receive genuine assurance of His presence, protection and profession in the church. And also, just like Jacob, renew your commitment by being more involved, faithfully involving yourself in the local church.

So it is in Christ alone that we are assured of God’s presence,

protection and profession and it is in His body where we experience His presence, protection and provision. May the word of God enrich our knowledge of Him and may it stir us to live in light of these truths. Let us pray.

Great God and gracious Father, thank You O Lord for giving us Christ, for continuously giving us Christ through Your word and through the sacraments O Lord. Lord I pray that when You preach to us Your word that we will indeed faithfully renew our commitment by truly listening to Your word by, by genuinely saying Amen to Your word, by graciously receiving Your word, Your Your word preached and Your word visible in the supper. So Lord, again, thank You. We pray O Lord that You allow us to always be satisfied In Christ alone knowing O Lord the hardships that we have in this world, that it is only Christ whom You have have given us, Panginoon na aming satisfaction and Lord also may, may we appreciate Your ministry here in the church.

Makita namin Panginoon yung how Your ministry here sa preaching, sa fellowship, sa discipleship, makita namin ang lahat nang ito ay fulfilment ng Inyong Promise.Eto talaga ang Proteksyon Mo, dito namin makikita ang Presensiya Mo at ang Inyong patuloy na Probisyon. Salamat po Panginoong Diyos, Nawa’y Kayo lamang ang ma-glorify sa aming mga buhay. We Praise You In His name, amen.

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