“Thou shall have no other gods before me”

Brothers and sisters-in-Christ, the Bible has made it clear to Christians that we are not to worship idols. The Ten Commandments include the first and foremost commandment in Exodus 20:3 which is, “Thou shall have no other gods before me”

The 26th and 27th of September 2010 will remain in the minds of Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Cheong as long as they live. First of all, it was an unforgettable experience that would change their lives forever when they accepted Christ as their Saviour. Secondly, it was an unforgettable experience that one is set free from the bondage of idolatry. It was  a memorable experience for sisters Kezia Yeow and Jin Ye at the same time for they were first-timers at an iconoclastic event. Iconoclasm is a belief that uses images and icons for idolatry and it should be removed and destroyed. Pastor Ronny Khoo’s sharing of Psalm 115 in Hokkien, helped to enlighten Mr. and Mrs. Cheong of idols, which are the work of men’s hands. They have mouths but they speak not; eyes have they but see not. They have ears but hear not; noses have they but they smell not. Have hands but handle not; feet have they but walk not; neither speak they through their throat. They that make them are like unto them; so is everyone that trusted in them. Mr. and Mrs. Cheong were told that the idols that were once in their possession would be nullified and made unfit to be worshipped by breaking off the idol’s head. Their willingness and compliance to God’s commandment was clearly revealed by their answer to our request whether we would prefer a bigger hammer or a smaller one as the very instrument of destruction for the objects of false worship. Every idolatrous item from candle like-bulbs, joss sticks, cups, tea pots and talismans to whatever accessory that would help to advance an idolatrous cause would not be spared. Even the three ceramic iconic figures of the “Fu Lu Shou” as decorative ornaments were not spared.

We pray that the faith of Mr. and Mrs. Cheong is true saving faith and not an emotional or an intellectual faith. And we are to constantly be reminded that it is possible to look and sound like Christians and yet in reality not being one. As we were told in last week’s sermon that there are two types of animals, the sheep and goats; though the bleating can be the same but at the judgment the Lord, the sheep will enter into everlasting bliss and the goats into everlasting torment. And nothing can help us to understand better of what true conversion than the Parable of the Sower by the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord spoke of three different kinds of grounds to describe the unbelievers. Firstly, the wayside ground that the seed fell on and was quickly eaten up by the birds. Secondly, the seed fell on stony ground and not much soil that the seed could take root and died when the sun came up. Thirdly, the seed fell on a thorny ground and the thorns choked out the seed. And the fourth ground, the good ground represents true believers who hear the Word of God, receive it and allowing it to take root in their lives. Brothers and sisters, if you are truly saved, it can be very certain that you do not have any graven image or images in your home and yet you may have something that overtakes your relationship with the Lord. If that is the case, you have an idol in your life. An idol need not be in the form of wood, stone and metal to be considered as one. The very idol in your life can be your career, your car, your house, your son, your daughter and SELF that God is completely left out of your life.

Mr. and Mrs. Cheong made the right choice not to hang on to the idols but they must never forget the greatest commandment in Deuteronomy 6:5, “And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might”

Pastor Douglas Ho

Testimony of sister Kim Hoa on Mission Trip to Vietnam

First of all, I would like to give thank unto God for giving me this opportunity to serve God together with our mission team in Vietnam. I thank God for His grace and strength in helping me to organize this mission trip. Before the trip, I was really worried on how things might turn out. Praise the Lord as my worries were unfounded as all things had gone smoothly, according to God’s will.

I remember the first night when we arrived at a hotel in the countryside. Not only was the hotel not equipped with any air-con, even the basic necessities such as electricity, water, proper lighting and fans were lacking.  We gathered we would have difficulty getting our much needed rest without fans or air-con in that hotel. As it was getting late then, I became worried because it would not be easy to find other hotel in the vicinity. I thank God that my brother (who was chauffeuring us around) suggested that we go to the city to find a decent hotel. I prayed for the Lord to help and direct us and our gracious Lord did not disappoint when we asked Him. We managed to find a hotel with acceptable facilities for our overnight stay.

I wish to thank God for the Pastor, church session and all the Vietnam teachers who had been praying for this mission trip as well as the children who came for VBS. The cooking team, who served God with joyful hearts in preparing meals for us, was very encouraging too. During three days of VBS, I realized that the children were happy and excited to know the foreign teachers came from Singapore, and they were even more excited to study and learn God’s Word. On the third day, I was very touched when I saw most of the children came up to pray and had accepted our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ as their saviour.  This was after preacher Phuoc had called upon them to accept Christ who had died for their sin, they acknowledged that they were sinner and needed to be saved by believing in Jesus Christ.

I also want to thank God for helping me in my interpretation work during the VBS, not forgetting  Pastor’s wife and sister Ngan Khanh who had been very kind to me and even prepared honey juice  to soothe my throat and restore my voice.

Finally, praise the Lord for each member of our mission team who had shown great desire to serve God during this mission trip. They had no complaints putting up in inconvenient places, but served with joyful and zealous hearts in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ. I am looking forward to the mission trip next year, if God is willing.

I would like to encourage those who are willing to serve God in these mission fields with what apostle Paul had said, “Therefore my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in  the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord”(1 Cor 15:58). All glory be given to God.

Sister Kim Hoa