Monday, June 6, 2022

Pentecost Offertory: Unless They Are Sent Sermon

Leonard V. Johnson

Greetings Everyone all around the world! Our friends in Oklahoma! Welcome! In Fayetteville, North Carolina, in Hurricane, West Virginia, and Evansville, Indiana. Welcome to the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries here in beautiful Spring Hill, Florida! And, I’m Leonard V. Johnson.
     For this holy Sabbath day, I’d like to go over an offertory for tomorrow's Holy Day of Pentecost.
     Now, if you have your Bible in front of you, you might want to follow along. Let’s begin in the New Testament with the Book of Acts chapter 2. I’ll be reading from my purple New King James Version.
     Acts chapter 2 beginning with verse 1.
     "When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place."
     Now, these were all our Lord Jesus Christ’s disciples, gathered together to keep the holy Day of Pentecost. Yet, they were not the only ones that were in the city of David at the time.
     Let’s notice verse 5.
     "And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven." {1}
     And we see a list of those nations which were there notice beginning in verse 8.
     "And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? 9) Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10) Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11) Cretans and Arabs - we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God."
     So, Jews and proselytes. Proselytes were those who had converted from one religion to another.
     And then we see beginning in verse 14, the apostle Peter – and again, as I’ve mentioned before – I use the title apostle in his name because he deserves it. Many like to just say, Peter. I, personally, believe that we should show respect to all these men which our Lord Jesus Christ taught – and we should use their title with respect. As a sort-of example, when you go in to visit your doctor, do you call him or her by their first name!? Or do you use their title!? If you do use their first name – then maybe the two of you are golf buddies!? Just joking – don’t take me seriously here.
     But, the apostle Peter stands up and he begins to preach – some things from the Old Testament, and he brings up some things concerning our Lord Jesus Christ! And here again, you might think that it’s not important to use our Lord Jesus Christ’s title. Because many people just say His name – Jesus. Again, I just believe that proper reverence should be in order when we are speaking not just about One who became flesh and tabernacled among us – but in TRUTH we’re talking about the very CREATOR of all things! The known universe and of all spirits! I’m just saying. Now, to note – and I get this from David Wittenberg – who claims to be a Professor at the International School of Management Excellence in India commented on Quora – a site on which I have reservations with – he commented in this regard:
     “From the earliest days … people were referring to Jesus as Jesus Christ. … So, there is no single right or wrong way to use Jesus’ name and title. Most people will understand you if you use any of these forms.” 
     And I agree. It doesn’t have anything to do with salvation. But, a little humility does go a long way. So, whether one says just Jesus, or His name along with His title, it should be with great humility and reverence.
     But, getting back here – the apostle Peter brings up some important facts about our Lord Jesus Christ – and there’s one way to look at this is that the people who were converted and were from different areas and nations, and they can just go back and live in their areas and be like everybody else, and all one has to do is take care of yourself. That’s the way a great many appear to view Christianity. But interestingly, the apostle Peter says something which I want to speak about this holy Sabbath – here in the Book of Acts chapter 2. Over in verse 39.
     "For the promise [the promise of salvation] is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God [God the Father] will call."
     So, he wasn’t just speaking of the people who would end up seeing and being visited by them, he – of course – meant others whom God the Father was going to call. Now how did this happen!?
     Originally it was just Jews and proselytes which were called. But others ended up being called also.

Gentiles Called

     Turning with me to the Book of Acts chapter 9 we see that Saul was very upset and breathing threats against the disciples of the Lord. He went to Damascus; he was commissioned by the high priest to go there and bring back any of the Way, whether men or women and bring them back for imprisonment or worse.
     But our Lord Jesus had a plan for him. Now, of course, Saul had a terrible reputation. In fact, so bad was his reputation, that Ananias - who God had given a vision – had said to God, “Lord, I have heard a great deal about this man. He has done much harm to Your saints there in Jerusalem.” But, our Lord Jesus said to Ananias there in verse 15.
     " ... 'Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.'"
     And continuing through this chapter we see that Saul was converted.
     Now, this was indeed a part of God’s Master Plan – to call Gentiles. And the apostle Peter should have known that this was part of God’s Master Plan. But, the apostle Peter didn’t quite fully understand all of this.
     Over in the Book of Acts chapter 10, the apostle Peter has a vision – and I don’t want to cover all of this here in this sermon – we’ve spoken of this vision several times. In fact, you can go onto our website – and at the top type in “meat” or “unclean” and read our posted article by Minister Guy LaMar “Pork – Is It A Sin To Eat?” In that article, he goes over Acts chapter 10.
     Basically, God explains to him that Gentiles are going to be called.
     Let’s turn into the Book of Romans chapter 10. Let’s begin here in verse 12.
     "For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek [meaning Jew and Gentile], for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him."
     Notice verse 13.
     "For 'whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.' 14) How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? 15) And how shall they preach unless they are sent? ..."
     So, the LORD our God’s Plan is not to just call people to be just on their own – just live their own life – to just be with themselves.

A Great Commission

     God’s Plan is also to call others! And one of the things which our Lord Jesus Christ commissioned is mentioned in the Book of Matthew chapter 28 verses 19 & 20. He says –
     "'Go therefore and make disciples [meaning, teach] of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20) teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; ...'"
     So, our peoples have to be taught, and there are people that have to be sent.
     Turning again to the Book of Romans, this time chapter 15. Something which the apostle Paul said. Verse 27.
     "It pleased them indeed, and they are their debtors. For if the Gentiles have been partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister to them in material things."
     So, the apostle Paul is saying that those who have been the beneficiaries of spiritual information – the great and awesome knowledge from God along with His promises – have an obligation to potentially getting the good news out unto the world.
     Now, a great many of our peoples in this world have various attitudes against others, and on the Day of Pentecost, we learn that God the Father is indeed calling a few – a minute few in this age NOW!
     We have posted on our webpage – a seven-part series by Minister Michael C. Garrett entitled “Pentecost” in which he goes over in great detail anyone who wants to be of God.
     Again, these series of articles are available to read for free with no obligation whatsoever on our webpage And I mention these great articles {2} because – not just for our friends around the world who are aware of being called by Father God, but others who God may be calling as well. Now, there are programs which we could use to make the article into a video – like InVideo in connection with a free program QuilBot – but to be honest, I don’t have a lot of time for all of that. That would be an excellent project for one of our dear friends of the same faith and like mind to contact us here and who would like to help in this regard. You certainly would be blessed by our Lord Jesus Christ and indeed help to spread the gospel around the world.

Be Not Ignorant of This Mystery

     So, indeed, God has a Master Plan in just calling you. As a matter of fact, let’s take a look at – again the Book of Romans chapter 11 –
     Going down to verse 25.
     "For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in."
     Notice that the apostle Paul calls this a mystery. And he says that many are ignorant of this – and he doesn’t want you to be ignorant of this. But, he’s talking about when “the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.”
     Now, I’d like to read a transcript from a sermon of Minister Michael C. Garrett of the Owensboro Church of Jesus Christ in Owensboro, Kentucky. And if you’re in Kentucky or near enough to Owensboro to visit the Owensboro Church of Jesus Christ, we certainly invite you to visit us. Contact us here at and we will certainly let Minister Garrett know that you’re coming to visit on one of God’s holy Sabbath services.
     But this that I read is from the article entitled “Hidden Truths” {3} And I’ll be sure to leave a link for you for this article in the information section of this sermon here.
     “Now, was Paul intentionally saying that God’s Word is a mystery!? … In 1st Corinthians 2: verse 7 look at what he calls it - “ … the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, … Paul writes concerning his ministry and the Message which he was teaching – and he describes it as ‘revealing a hidden mystery, this hidden wisdom.’ Now the Greek word “mystery” is mystērion, meaning “secret.” This word only appears in the New Testament which lists it approximately 22 times. But this is not something that is mysterious or mystic, or even astrological or cultic. It actually means – and in Romans 11:25 I have noted ‘of obtaining eternal life, the hope of eternal life’ – a hidden truth. The truth that is hidden from most people. And I believe that this truth is hidden from most – if not all – of so-called Christianity.”
     Now, he also wrote in that same article –
     Jesus Christ made it known unto the apostle Paul that the Gentiles were also included in His Plan of salvation. And, that was a ‘hidden truth’ that they didn’t see coming. And I believe this is one of the reasons why the Jews gave Paul so much trouble when he was preaching to the Gentiles. Because they couldn’t believe that Gentiles (other nations) were being offered this same promise of salvation through the gospel and through the glorious Message which Paul preached.
     Now, concerning this “fullness of the Gentiles” – this ‘fullness of the Gentiles’ refers to the fact when this final end-time European military invades the Middle East and takes over Jerusalem and the newly built temple - whatever that consists of.
     Notice verses 31 – 32.
     "even so these also have now been disobedient, that through the mercy shown you they also may obtain mercy. 32) For God has committed them all to disobedience, that He might have mercy on all."
     What the apostle Paul in essence is saying to us here is that in the Millennial reign of our Lord Jesus Christ – those Gentiles who were converted before the Millennium will also be in the kingdom of the LORD our God and will have the opportunity to become priests.
     And one of the glorious things which the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries and our affiliated churches – and if you’re wondering about those affiliated churches it’s the OWENSBORO CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST in Owensboro, Kentucky under the leadership of Michael C. Garrett, and THE INDEPENDENT CHRISTIAN CHURCH OF GOD in Athens, Alabama under the leadership of Guy C. LaMar. But, what we have been doing is reaching out not to just the lost sheep of the house of Israel, but also to the Gentiles. And at the beginning of nearly every sermon I say hello and welcome to our many brethren and friends from around the world – at the taping of this sermon for this holy Sabbath day – the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries website has reached nearly 10,000 people in the last four years. Now our website says that we have reached over 93,000 people in the last 10 years! We have also reached in the last two years – conservatively, over 97 countries and provinces. And, I don’t mention these stats to blow our own horn, but only for the glory of God! Could we be more effective!? Yes. I’m sure there are things we could be doing which would be. Again - That would be an excellent job for one of our dear friends of the same faith and like mind to contact us here and who would like to help in this regard.

Give As You Are Able

     Certainly the LORD our God calls people in relatively poor areas of the world. And certainly, with greater funds, we could more easily minister to them. And this is one of the things that offerings are used for.
     Notice the Book of 2nd Corinthians chapter 9 – again from the apostle Paul here –
     Verse 1.
     "Now concerning the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you."
    Here he’s telling the Corinthians that they were pretty good about sending things. And he was reminding them of that. And I say to our brethren and friends who are faithful to us and our affiliated churches - you are as well, and we thank you for that.
     So he’s speaking of “ministering to the saints” meaning assisting poor people – our brethren in much poorer places of the world. And he speaks of offerings in verse 6.
     "But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7) So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. 8) And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. 9) As it is written: 'He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever.'" 10) Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, 11) while you are enriched in everything for all liberality {4}, which causes thanksgiving through us to God."
     The apostle Paul is saying that God will bless you if you will provide the type of offerings that will help your poorer brethren. Now, we at the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries and our affiliated churches are not just speaking of our brethren in Africa, India, or Bangladesh – but also here closer to home – also here in the United States of America.
     In verse 13
     "while, through the proof of this ministry, they glorify God for the obedience of your confession to the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal sharing with them and all men, 14) and by their prayer for you, who long for you because of the exceeding grace of God in you. 15) Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!"
     So, are you thankful for Father God calling you! Are you thankful for this glorious great gift!?
     So, I mentioned earlier that we do have to reach our peoples – not just ourselves. And one thing which we have done is post several online booklets onto Google to read. Such as “Is God a Trinity?” which is available to read. We also, with the great help of Brother Erick Odhiambo in Kenya, we have this booklet translated into Kiswahili for our brethren and friends who feel more comfortable reading Kiswahili. And as far as God’s Master Plan to call others we also have a seron on our YouTube channel entitled “Salvation OFFERED To All”

Offerings Commanded by God

     Well, let us go back into the Old Testament – the Book of Exodus chapter 23 beginning in verse 14.
     "'Three times you shall keep a feast to Me in the year: 15) You shall keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread (you shall eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded you, at the time appointed in the month of Abib, for in it you came out of Egypt; none shall appear before Me empty); 16) and the Feast of Harvest, the firstfruits of your labors which you have sown in the field; and the Feast of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you have gathered in the fruit of your labors from the field. 17) Three times in the year all your males [meaning, the head of the household] shall appear before the Lord GOD."
     Now, the “Feast of Harvest, the firstfruits of your labors” is Pentecost. And we true Christians are the first fruits. And it also has another name known as the Feast of Weeks. And it was called that because you count the weeks – the first day after the Sabbath during the Days of Unleavened Bread – seven weeks called the Feast of Weeks. And when you count up all those days it comes to 50 – and so it’s called PENTECOST.
     Also the Book of Deuteronomy chapter 16.
     Beginning in verse 16 it's referred to as the Feast of Weeks.
     "'Three times a year all your males [again, meaning the head of the household] shall appear before the LORD your God in the place which He chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks [as I just said, called PENTECOST], and at the Feast of Tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the LORD empty-handed. 17) Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God which He has given you."
     So, we are supposed to give according to the blessing which God has given us.
     Now, how do we give!?
     Well, here we’re talking about giving financial offerings.
     Many of you who live in the United States of America can simply write a check or get a money order and send funds to:
     Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries
     P.O. Box 6458
     Spring Hill, FL. 34606.
    Now for those of you who are outside of the United States as well as some who are in the United States you can also go to our website where we take PayPal and you give a donation through PayPal and it goes to support the work.
     So, this work of God is not just for us – not just for ourselves. We need to do this work. Our Lord Jesus says to go unto the world and teach all nations to observe all things that He has commanded – to make disciples.
     Please do your part, obey the LORD our God, and give an offering – like God commands on this holy day of Pentecost.
     This is Leonard V. Johnson of the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries.

Editor's Notes:

{1} Editor's note: Mr. Johnson says "under the sun" - it reads, "under heaven."
{2} Editor's note: They are not in fact articles, but rather a seven-part series of sermons given by Minister Michael C. Garrett in 2017.
{3} Editor's note: Mr. Johnson called this article "Hidden Truths." In fact, the article is called "'Mysteries' of God - Unlocking the Bible."
{4} Editor's note: Mr. Johnson mistakenly says "liberally." In fact, liberality means: the quality of giving or spending freely.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Be sure to leave a comment and tell us what you think.