Announcements for 7/26-8/1/2020

1. Morning Revival:

This week we will pursue morning revival on “Crystallization-study of Deuteronomy”, week 9 days1-3;

2. Prayer Meeting, Home Meeting, Lord’s Day Meeting will be held by Zoom

3. Corporate Gospel Outreach:

On Saturday morning, the gospel outreach prayer will begin at 10am by Zoom ID 3872069109

4. The Entire Church’s Goal to Next Labor Day:

Based on each district’s goal, the saints in Church in Alhambra will labor on Christ as the Good Land in 2020, to gain 94 remaining fruits in this year. Our average Lord’s Day attendance number will increase to 180. We will practice home trainings to reproduce 23 more new serving ones. We will increase 5 home meetings and 1 new district and raise up a new church in Temple City!

5. Pray for GTCA(Gospelize, Truthize, and Churchize America)

300 qualified saints (an average of 30 saints per city) to commit to migrating to the 10 US cities/churches. These brothers and sisters can range in age from young adults to seniors and may be university students, single saints, or married couples.30 full-time campus workers to form five campus teams, each with a player-coach (an average of six full-timers per team).

6. Prayer during the month of July

We strongly encourage all the saints to take the thirty suggested prayer burdens on beseeching.org/pray/ and pray over them again during the month of July. May the Lord strengthen His recovery and make us His house of prayer. Let us praise our merciful and faithful High Priest who is higher than the heavens and who brings us into oneness with Him in His heavenly ministry of intercession.

7. Labor Day Weekend Blending Conference

The conference will be conducted online and will include both spoken messages and breakout sessions for mutual sharing and blending of all the saints.

Schedule:

1st meeting: Friday, September 4………… 7:30 PM

2nd meeting: Saturday, September 5…….. 10:00 AM

3rd meeting: Saturday, September 5………. 7:30 PM

4th meeting: Lord’s Day, September 6……. 9:30 AM

8. Lord’s day(Today) 4-5pm is the wedding meeting of Sis Abib Cao and Br. Wei Chen:

click:https://us02web.zoom.us/j/6995953006 or in your ZOOM enter 699 595 3006 or call 6699006833 and then enter 6995953006#

9. Lord’s day(Today) 7-9pm will be the blending for Br. Jacob & Irene Hsiao, Sis Lily Pan, and Br. Jianhua Wang’s departure. If any brother/sister has burden to share a testimony, please list your name below.

Click Link:https://us04web.zoom.us/j/6900121287 password:103480

or in ZOOM enter 6900121287,password:103480

or call 312-626-6799,and enter 6900121287#,passwod:103480

Interview with Brother Horng Lin by Kingdom Revival Times, June 8, 2020

The World Situation as the Indicator of God’s Move on Earth: Local Church Serving Ones to Lead the Saints to Migrate Across Cultures to Preach the Gospel in 2020

Since the beginning of 2020, the pandemic of the century has spread across the globe, and the work of the church seems to have been put on hiatus. Nevertheless, at the same time, there has been a great awakening concerning the commission of the gospel. In view of this fact, and with the pandemic subsiding, Brother Horng Lin of the local church gave an interview on June 5th to discuss the church’s gospel commission and strategy.

“From the perspective of history, changes in the world situation are often great opportunities for the Gospel!” said Brother Horng Lin. He went on to explain that the historical events of the early 1990s; including the dissolution of the USSR, the collapse of the Berlin wall and the first Persian Gulf War, in which Iraq was defeated within 100 hours; had a major impact on Europe. At that time, Brother Witness Lee, a servant of the Lord, gave a message in which he declared, “The World Situation as the Indicator of God’s Move on Earth!” This word is a great reminder for the church today; the entirety of the changes in the world situation is all for the propagation of the gospel.

At the time of Brother Lee’s speaking, the coworkers in the USA were the first to migrate to propagate the gospel in Russia. Beginning in 1993, approximately 200 young co-workers from Taiwan also went there, in wave after wave, until nearly 200 localities were established in Russia. Additionally, in 2000, the church called for coworkers to migrate to Europe. To date, 100 localities have been established in Europe. Following this came the propagation of the gospel in Africa, where well over 100 localities have been raised up. This migration and move of the gospel continues today.

Brother Horng Lin also stated that for the church, the direction of gospel preaching always follows the shifts in the world situation, in the light of God’s intention, as the church strives to complete the great commission of God. With the current situation of the pandemic this year, it is clear that the world situation is undergoing another great shift. According to Revelation chapter 6, beginning from Christ’s ascension and unto the Lord’s return, the Bible reveals a four-horse race; with the white horse, the red horse, the black horse and the pale horse. The white horse signifies the victory of the gospel, and the other three horses represent war, famine, and death, respectively. Our brother emphasized that death is closely associated with pestilence. The impact of the current outbreak of COVID-19 has not been merely local, but has become global. By the Lord’s mercy, due to the experience with SARS, Taiwan has been the most preserved place in the world, with little impact from COVID-19.

“The most preserved place bears the greatest responsibility!” Brother Horng Lin declared strongly. He explained that the pandemic has truly changed the global situation. There are some experts who predict that the global economy will decline during the next decade. This situation, along with the current social unrest in the United States, constitute a climate of change which is an opportunity for the gospel. When the church coworkers met last week, they prayed earnestly concerning these changes in the world situation, seeking God’s heart’s desire; and had thorough fellowship. In short, the brothers felt that this year would be a year of horn-blowing, reminding all the saints of Matthew 24:14; “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole inhabited earth for a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Brother Horng Lin pointed out that the preaching of the gospel of the kingdom is God’s up-to-date commission for the saints. Beginning with the situation in 1991 until today, the churches throughout Taiwan have become richer, the saints have become more mature in life, and the coworkers have had more experiences. “Now is the time for Taiwan to rise up and head out!” he said.
Brother Horng Lin explained that the propagation of the church this time will not be a matter of the coworkers visiting other cultures to preach, as in Acts 13, but rather should be accomplished through the migration of the saints as in Acts 8. This type of gospel preaching is stronger and has greater impact. Throughout history, he said, migration for the gospel has been accomplished in three ways. First, there has been scattering by persecution. Second, there have been migrations of people due to the colonialism of strong nations.

The third means of migration is through true commission, by the saints and the churches receiving a burden to go. The coworkers all felt that this year is the time to receive the burden to preach the gospel of the kingdom all over the earth. In the past, everything has been done by sending the coworkers out; but this year, there will be a great horn-blowing to call the saints to migrate to Europe, Africa, and the rest of Asia. This will involve a great change in direction, with experienced coworkers leading the saints to migrate and propagate.

“Starting this year, we expect that one percent of the saints in Taiwan can migrate, and then we can slowly increase this number to ten percent,” Brother Horng Lin said. He explained that although this will not be an easy work, the Lord will be faithful to accomplish it. Beginning this year, the coworkers will start to lead the saints to migrate out of their familiar culture to preach. He said that very soon, three experienced coworkers will be ready to be sent to France, Germany, and Ukraine. May these preaching coworkers receive a greater burden, and be enabled to lead the saints in all the details of migration; obtaining a visa, learning how to fit into the local culture, etc. Brother Horng Lin said that the coworkers must become channels to lead the saints to migrate. This will lead to a migration that is broader and stronger than having only the coworkers do all the work.
So far, all the localities in Taiwan have been assigned migration destinations. The localities of Kaohsiung, Pingtung, and Penghu are to migrate to Sri Lanka in South Asia; the localities of Yunlin, Chiayi, and Tainan are assigned to France; the localities of Taichung, Changhua, and Nantou will go Laos and Thailand; and the localities of Taoyuan, Hsinchu, and Miaoli are assigned to India. Currently there are approximately 200 churches in India. The Church in New Taipei City will migrate to Vietnam, the Church in Taipei to Germany, Myanmar, and Cambodia; and the localities of Keelung, Yilan, Hualian and Taitung will go to Ukraine.

Brother Horng Lin said that the church has also considered the need for migration and propagation within Taiwan, which has six metropolises, three cities, and 198 villages and towns, for a total of 207 jurisdictions. So far, 126 churches have been raised up in these places, and 81 of them have no church life. Although most of these are in remote areas, they still need strengthening, so migration will be required within the island, not just overseas.

According to Brother Horng Lin, beginning in July, there will be a call in all the big and small meetings of the church, as well as in the young people’s conference, for the saints to migrate to propagate the gospel of the kingdom. “All the saints will be encouraged to migrate,” he said, “to go out around the globe, just like the virgins in Matthew 25, going forth to meet the Bridegroom.”

Br. Andrew Yu: An Open Letter(2020/5/29)

Dear brothers and sisters,

“The time of the Lord’s return is at hand. For this reason we are reevaluating many matters in the light of the judgment seat.”

The above quote is from “An Open Letter” in Issue No. 1 of The Present Testimony by Brother Watchman Nee published in January of 1928. Today, ninety-two years later, we are even closer to the time of the Lord’s return. Today, seeing all the things happening around us, we feel even more deeply that the time of the Lord’s return is closer than any of the previous ages. The instability of the world situation, the global spread of the pandemic, the panic in people’s hearts, the uncontrollable environment, and the economic crisis all indicate that this age is nearing a fundamental turning point. At this solemn moment, it should be a time for us to have a reevaluation. To reevaluate means that what was formerly the standard can no longer be the standard for today; what’s considered acceptable living can no longer be our living today; the former goals in our lives can no longer be our goals today; our former mode of valuation can no longer be the mode of valuation today; and our former ways can no longer be our ways today. Everything needs to be reevaluated in the light of the judgment seat. This means that everything needs to be reevaluated according to the Lord’s return and the consummation of the age. Our former church life, former services, and former ways of living all need to be reconsidered and reevaluated.

First we need to reevaluate our living. The Lord said, “Do not be anxious for tomorrow,” but “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness” (Matt. 6:33, 34). Do we trust in God in everything to live the life of the tent on the earth, having a living that is uprooted from the earth and storing up our treasures in heaven? Or are we still anxious for tomorrow? The young people are anxious for their employment after graduation, as well as their marriage and family. The middle-aged people are anxious for their career and their business performance for the next quarter or next year. The elderly people are anxious for their health, savings, and relationship with their children and grandchildren. We need to reevaluate. The apostles called people to be delivered from sins and turn to the Lord, but the Lord called people to bedelivered from mammon to follow Him (Matt. 6:24). Many preach the gospel of prosperity, but the Lord preached the gospel of poverty. The age is coming to an end, and one of the signs of the Lord’s coming is that people are storing up treasures (James 5:3). The ten virgins are “going out of the world” to meet the bridegroom (Matt. 25:1, note 5). The harvest needs to be “dried of all the earthly water” (Rev. 14:15, note 2) to be ripe for reaping. Brother Lee, in his diary right before the great revival in Chefoo, wrote on December 23 of 1942: “We should not be concerned with what we willeat, what we will drink, or what we will be clothed with; this is what the worldly people seek. We should care only for God’s kingdom and His righteousness. The worldly people lack clothing and food because they care only for their own living and not for God’s kingdom and His righteousness” (CWWL Vol. 2, p. 28). A day earlier, he wrote: “How desolate is the situation on earth today! Even more desolate is the condition within man! How many hearts and souls havesuffered to the extreme? How many souls are perishing every day? The church has lost her function…The church is like this because her consecration in the past was not thorough” (p. 27). On December 26, he wrote: “The reason we are quiet, have no aspiration to spread the Lord’s kingdom, have no power and courage to spread the Lord’s gospel, have no living faith, and are timid is all because we have not had a thorough consecration, have not stopped living for ourselves, and have not lived entirely for the Lord!…If we live entirely for the Lord like Peter on the day of Pentecost, we will also be able to say as Peter said, ‘In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene rise up and walk’ (Acts 3:6b). But to say this, we must also be able to say, ‘Silver and gold I do not possess’ (v. 6)!” (p. 29)

We need to reevaluate: does our living today have dispensational value? Do we, our person, have a dispensational significance before the Lord?

In order to have this kind of living, we need to be filled with the Spirit inwardly and outwardly every day (see The Way to Practice the Lord’s Present Move, ch. 2). If a balloon is not filled with air, it cannot ascend. Why do we need to have much and thorough prayer? It is for us to be filled both inwardly and outwardly. Why do we need to confess our sins and repent? It is because they are the requirements for us to be filled with the Spirit. Without a living that is daily filled with the Spirit both inwardly and outwardly, we cannot have a living that has dispensational value. Inorder for the virgins to meet the bridegroom, the requirement is that their vessels be filled with oil (Matt. 25:4). In order for us to redeem the time, we must be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:16, 18).

During these days, the more difficult the outward environment is, the stronger we feel inwardly that now is the time for God’s children to be uprooted from the world and to live the life of the tent. The benefit of migration is to cut off our old background and to learn to simply look to God to live a life of faith. The spreading of the kingdom is inextricably linked to being cut off from the world. The persecution in Acts 8 suddenly uprooted all the disciples and scattered them everywhere, which put the Lord’s command in chapter 1 into action. In order for the gospel of the kingdom to be preached to the whole inhabited earth, there is the need for some to live the kingdom life. For the Lord’s return to become real, man must “go out of the world” as the virgins did in Matthew 25. One hundred fifty years ago the gospel of grace was preached to China. One reason for that was that some in that age saw that the Lord might return in that generation and that the gospel needed to be preached to the whole world in that generation. Today, the gospel of the kingdom needs to be preached to the whole inhabited earth because the time of the Lord’s return is even closer. At this juncture, should we not reevaluate how we should spend our remaining days on the earth? Should we not cut off the old ties at this time to practically live the life of the tent, live for the gospel, and move for the Lord?

At this moment, we also need to reevaluate our church life. Whether the Lord is satisfied with our church life is one thing, we should first ask ourselves whether we are satisfied with our current church life. True, we have very good truths, and we also have a church life that we have been comfortable with for many years. However, what we need to reevaluate is whether or not this kind of church life can satisfy the Lord’s need, whether it can usher in the Lord’s return. In the church where we are, has the number of saints grown? Are the saints vital?

In 1992 and 1993, Brother Lee was deeply dissatisfied with the church life at that time, so he released the messages on the vital groups, hoping to produce the overcomers outside of the infrastructure of the church life at that time, who would be delivered from the three great enemies of death, lukewarmness, and barrenness. Unfortunately, although the messages were released, the practice has yet to be seen. In the past twenty-three years, although the church life in each locality has gone on steadily, they are still mainly composed of meetings and mainly carried out by way of asking people to come to the meetings, and what is treasured among us is still the great number of attendance. Please consider: in the light of the Lord’s return, shouldn’t this kind of church life be reevaluated?

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, the brothers and sisters have been limited physically. All physical meetings have stopped, and the saints can only communicate mostly over the internet in smaller settings. But in this process, many found out that brothers and sisters actually prefer this new mode of church life. Over the internet, everyone prays for one another, has mutual fellowship, and cares for the new ones. Everyone is able to function, and everyone practices begetting, nourishing, perfecting, and building in an organic way. This is actually the vital groups that Brother Lee talked about, which is for everyone to function and for everyone to serve as a priest. In this way, many new ones have been saved, and many who have not been meeting have been reconnected. In many localities, the number of people has increased, and many members of the Body have been enlivened. It turns out that this is the way for the Body of Christ to be built up. Of course, we are not saying that we should not resume the physical meetings after the pandemic. However, in light of this new situation brought in by the pandemic, isn’t it worthwhile for us to reevaluate our church life? Shouldn’t we turn more from “meeting” to “people,” from “coming” to “going,” and from “big” to “small”?

In the light of the Lord’s return, we should also reevaluate our service. The ultimate goal of our service is to perfect people. The work of the ministry is to perfect the saints unto the work of the ministry, unto the building up of the Body of Christ. Today our work is not to raise up a work but to raise up people. The effectiveness of our work today is not measured by how much work is done but how many people have been raised up. Strictly speaking, our work today is not to do the work but to distribute the work. Today the question is not how much we ourselves have done buthow much others have done. The parable of the slaves in Matthew 25 reminds us that the question is not how much we have maintained but how much we have reproduced. The five- talented one perfected another five-talents, and the two-talented one perfected another two-talents. Thus, they received the Lord’s approval. But the one-talented one did not perfect anyone, and he was cast into the darkness. The Lord is coming to settle an account with each one of us.

Today in the light of the Lord’s return, we all need to reevaluate our service and see whether our service, in the light of the judgment seat, will be approved or not. The good and faithful slaves were not those who merely maintain their portions but those who reproduced themselves. The evil and slothful slave was not one who abandoned his service but one who did not reproduce himself. Whether in the church or in the vital groups, our duty is to perfect others unto the work of the ministry, unto the building up of the Body of Christ. We need to use all wisdom to perfect others. We need to use all those whom people regard as useless. We need to dig out all the one-talented ones from the earth, so that their talents are no longer buried in the world. The growth in life is gradual, but the trading of one’s talent is immediate (Matt. 25:16). In the light of the Lord’s return, we need to evaluate our service to see whether it is up to the Lord’s standard.

Lastly, in the light of the Lord’s return, we need to reevaluate our work. There are two basic questions: whether our work is of a maintenance nature or of a pioneering nature, and whether our work is static or dynamic. The pattern of the brothers who went before us is that they were always moving and progressing. At the outset of the Sino-Japanese War, Brother Nee founded the magazine called The Open Door. He reminded the co-workers that they should not merely try to cope with the environment; instead, they should preach the gospel everywhere to spread the Lord’s testimony. The co-workers should not stay in one place but should travel everywhere. Actually, the testimonies today in many places throughout Southeast Asia were all started at that time.

The Lord’s testimony has been on the island of Taiwan for over seventy years. From the beginning Brother Lee’s hope was that Taiwan would be a starting point wherethe Lord’s testimony would spread to the whole world. Today in this special time, should we not reevaluate the direction of our work? Actually, just in Taiwan alone, there are still quite a few cities and towns that do not have a church andrequire propagation there. The needs outside Taiwan are even greater. Now is not the time for us to stick to our own place. Now is the time for us to spread the gospel of the kingdom with a view of the whole earth. Should we allow ourselves to be stuck in one place till the Lord comes? If Abraham had not left his own land and his own country, God’s move on earth could not have begun. What the Bible gave us is not the biographies of the apostles but the acts of the apostles. Recently after the three rounds of 24-hour prayer and the 30-day global prayer, a brother in China saw lightning and heard voices of thunders in his prayer and immediately consecrated himself and migrated with his factory to a place in Southeast Asia where there is not yet a church. Is this a precursor of the Lord’s move?

May the Lord cause us to see the opportunity afforded to us today to cooperate with His move. At a time when the whole world is facing an unprecedented challenge, may we reevaluate our living, meetings, service, and work in the light of the Lord’s return.

Andrew Yu

May 29, 2020

Instructions for Online Zoom Gospel Meeting

Precautions for online Zoom gospel meeting (for reference only, it can be flexibly adjusted and supplemented according to your local church conditions)

Before the meeting:

  1. Encourage saints to list all the names and pray for them
  1. Invitation card (do not include too many words, just highlight the theme of the gospel meeting), attach the call-in phone and meeting ID.
  1. Arrange the saints to share in the meeting: who is the host, who to lead to sing, who to witness, who to collect information, and who to conclude:

-It is necessary to test the smoothness of the network for the ones who will be sharing on Zoom in advance. And if the voice/sound is loud enough?

-The saints (especially the ones who are giving testimonies and messages) need to practice  to speak on Zoom, because some people will not be used to it, and time will also be limited.

-Pay attention to your appearance, clothing, background, lighting.

  1. Arrange the technical operator(s):

-Share your screen (hymns, verses, outlines, reading materials, video, etc.)

Use share-screen bottom to share, remember to check “share computer sound” if you want to play video. It is not recommended to use Chat to share the link, the link will become text format instead of hyperlink, you need to copy and paste to the browser. (Currently, the function of directly sharing files in Chat seems have not been enabled)

-Mute/unmute operator(s):

If you unmute all, do not allow participants to unmute themselves. This is very important, otherwise someone will unmute themselves, it will interrupt the meeting.

-Spotlight/cancel Spotlight

This person needs to spotlight the host and the sharing saints, so that everyone can see. This is the service of “switching the camera”.

-Grouping operator(s):

Grouping is very difficult. Especially when there are so many people, some gospel friends leave without grouping. If you want to group them, it is best to group them for 5-10 minutes, let them introduce each other. Some people can stay in the main room to watch when grouping. Some people can be added or not. If you want to divide them into groups, consider how to divide in advance. Each group must have serving ones. It is best to divide at the beginning or end of the meeting. Many people will leave if the grouping happens in the middle of the meeting.

5.To clearly write down each process of the meeting, what each link does, and what to broadcast. The host needs to rehearse 1-2 times from beginning to end with the shared saints and technical operators.

6.Encourage the saints to turn on the video. If the gospel friends do not see us, they will not turn on their video either. The saints who technical operators should also be dressed appropriately and also turn on the video.

7.The core serving ones must have a WeChat group to respond and make any adjustment for the meeting in time.

8.Zoom setting:

You can modify the account after logging in on the webpage, please update to the latest version.

Personal-> Setting-> Meeting

-allow co-host: Assign co-host is required for technical operation person.

-only host / co-host can share screen. turn off annotation

-mute upon entry

-Auto saving chats

-allow Break out rooms (if you want to grouping them)

-Allow participants to rename themselves

Personal-> Setting-> Recording

-only host / co-host can record meeting.

-Don’t turn on “Recording disclaimer” otherwise everyone who enters Zoom will receive a reminder of the meeting recording.

During the meeting:

  1. Play photos of the church life in advance (it’s a video: PPT with music), which makes gospel friends feel friendly, comfortable, and familiar.
  2. The host(s) should have a loud voice, preferably two hosts. Saints and gospel friends everywhere are welcomed to wave their hands. Encourage everyone to turn on the video. If you want to group them, you can consider doing it at the beginning or end of the meeting. Group them and use 5 minutes to introduce each other (virtual handshake).
  3. Sing hymns:

-You can sing along with the hymn video recorded in advance.

-Or there may be a dedicated saint (1 or more) to lead the sing, they just sing, other people mute to sing on their own.

-Or a few families (the best one has 2-3 people), prepare in advance and practice singing well.

-You can also try to sing openly (not all unmute, who wants to sing and raise their hands, unmute, spotlight) to stimulate the atmosphere.

-Choose short, easy-to-sing hymns to lift up the spirit, encourage everyone to sing, and clap your hands.

-If you feel the testimony, the speaking is weak, you can use short hymns to stir up the atmosphere and spirit.

-You can let everyone declare “Hallelujah” at the end of the hymn, you can unmute all for a few seconds, let everyone’s voice come out, there will be impact.

  1. Testimonies must have been prepared well beforehand; try to speak on Zoom, voices should come out, proper expressions, do not exceed the time limit.
  2. Brothers who give the message: release your spirit, and let your voice come out, not too fast, and be proficient in the content. You can take everyone to call for the name of the Lord and read the verses. Host or co-host can say amen to support in a timely manner.
  3. The switch of Spotlight should be proficient, mute/unmute should be fast.
  4. During the meeting, the saints who are responsible for the recording can turn the page to record all the participants, and then record the statistics. Especially when calling to raise your hand.
  1. Someone who ushers in Chat and promptly responded to the host with feedback.
  1. It’s best to end within an hour, gospel friends cannot stay too long.
  1. Call: Raise your hand to express your willingness to accept the Lord. Encourage a few more times. Also encourage them to reply in the Chat to be willing to believe in the Lord and to be baptized. When you lead everyone to pray, please close your eyes, “I pray, everybody please follow me.” The host can echo to pray for everyone, because all are unmuted. The brothers who are calling out can then pray. After praying, you can ask the gospel friends who prayed to reply “I am saved.” You can also encourage everyone to join the Bible reading group at this time.
  1. Leave some time after the report, let the saints who are willing to stay sing hymns, take turns to sing, it would be very happy!

 

After the meeting:

 

  1. Statistics: total number of attendees, the number of attendees changing over time. Number of saints (local and other localities), number of gospel friends (local, other localities), number of the ones who are willing to believe (local, other localities).

 

  1. The response from the gospel friends, and follow up.

 

  1. Review every segment of the meeting.

 

Br. Andrew Yu’s Fellowship on Now is the Time for Vital Groups to Reopen for Business(2020/4/15)

In the past weeks, since there have been signs that the coronavirus outbreaks are slowing down, most governments are actively promoting business reopening and resumption of production. We should be much more desperate for our vital groups to reopen for business and resume production in order that the functions of the vital groups can be fully restored.

Practicing of the vital groups, on the one hand, is to vitalize ourselves so that we can become the overcomers; on the other hand, is to recover the functions of the saints, so that every saint can participate in begetting, nourishing, perfecting and building. The purpose of resuming the work of vital groups is to restore the vital groups’ original functions and to bring them back to the normal condition. The purpose of practicing vital groups is to recover the saints’ the original condition ordained by God of the believers.

At the moment, western countries are trying to figure out how to get the society reopened after the outbreak. However, their focus is on bringing people back to their normal life, e.g. going out to restaurant, theater and other public places, etc. What the government concerns the most is to restore the society’s superstructure, but not the substructure. The latter is the underlying framework of the society. If we want to stabilize the substructure, the reopening of work and production is crucial.

In a certain sense, we can say that the vital groups are the “substructure” of our church life. The two things that the vital groups can help recover, the normal Christian life and the function of each member of the Body, are extremely essential. Without the foundation laid by the vital groups, we cannot have a solid “superstructure” of the church life.

Similar to the restoration of the quality of people’s life, the reopening of work and production is necessary so as to restore the quality of the church life. Therefore, the reopening and resumption of every vital group is necessary. Practicing the vital groups is for everyone to function and to serve God. The spreading of the gospel today should rely on every member, rather than “the spiritual giants; likewise, the work of shepherding and perfecting should be carried out by all the saints, instead of some “gifted ones”. Therefore, to resume the production of the vital groups, every saint needs to rise up to preach the gospel and take care of others.

During the coronavirus outbreak, the vital groups played an important role in sustaining the connections among the saints. We should go on practicing the vital groups, not only in the sense of “reopening for business” but also “resuming production”. We should not just “stay at home”, but “work from home”; we should not only pray, but also produce the building materials for the house of God.

After this epidemic, the industries need to first restore the connection with their clients and with their suppliers, before they can reopen for work. This first step is to take care of both the upstream and the downstream. Likewise, every vital group also needs to take care of its “upstream” and “downstream” connection. To restore the connection with the “upstream supplier” is to receive God’s dispensing in the Spirit through the word of God, so that each member in the group can be a vital member and an overcomer. Meanwhile, we should also develop our “downstream” relationships by renewing the old relationships and building more new relationships. With the assurance of both “supply and demand chain”, we can have our vital groups ready to reopen for work and resume production

To recover the society from a months-long epidemic, we need the full cooperation and collaboration of all the parties. It is more so to recover the church from centuries-long “hibernation”. For this we need the one accord among the saints. In this new stage, we should not only renew our old relationships, but stretch forward to approach the new ones for their new needs and new challenges. In doing so, the work and production of the vital groups can soon be resumed, the running of the great wheels of God can go on, and the plan of God can be carried out.

The turning point in the fight against the virus is coming near, and people’s heart are now widely open. After the gray horse ran on stage, now it is the time for the rider on the white horse to go forth and conquer.

Brothers and sisters, rise up! Be a diligent priest of the gospel of God! Let’s preach the gospel and Save the fallen! Save millions from perishing!

Rise! Preach the gospel now!
Rescue the fallen!
Lo, millions perishing daily in pain!
Quench not your heart of love,
Count not possessions:
Rise! Preach the gospel while moments remain.

At the same time, in order to gain the up-to-date revelation, we need to keep praying unto the “utter exhaustion” (Dan. 9:21). The original 24-hour/21-day prayer has been extended to 30 days. We encourage all the saints to join this global prayer, especially the ones who have not participated yet. We hope every brother and sister can partake of this move of the whole church. (For more information, please visit http://unceasinglypray.org )

Announcements for April 12-18

1.       Morning Revival:

               •This week we will pursue morning revival on “Crystallization-study of Deuteronomy”, week 3 days1-3;

2.        Prayer Meeting:

               •Prayer meetings will be held by Zoom;

3.         Home Meeting:

•Home meetings will be held by Zoom;

4.         Corporate Gospel Outreach: 

               •On Saturday mornings, the gospel outreach prayer will begin at 11am by Zoom.

5.          Next Lord’s Day Meeting:       

 •The Lord’s day meeting will be held by Zoom;

6.     The Entire Church’s Goal to Next Labor Day: 

Based on each district’s goal, the saints in Church in Alhambra will labor on Christ as the Good Land in 2020, to gain 94 remaining fruits in this year. Our average Lord’s Day attendance number will increase to 180. We will practice home trainings to reproduce 23 more new serving ones. We will increase 5 home meetings and 1 new district and raise up a new church in Temple City!

7.         Pray for GTCA(Gospelize, Truthize, and Churchize America)

300 qualified saints (an average of 30 saints per city) to commit to migrating to the 10 US cities/churches. These brothers and sisters can range in age from young adults to seniors and may be university students, single saints, or married couples.30 full-time campus workers to form five campus teams, each with a player-coach (an average of six full-timers per team).

 8. 21-day prayer (4/1-4/21)

The Lord answered the saints’ prayers from the first two rounds of prayers. Coronavirus is being contained in China. Now we need to pray more in a watchful way.

9. 2nd Quarter Online Gospel Meeting

Our 2nd Quarter gospel meeting will be held online. Please invite the gospel friends both near and far. Details will be announced later this week. Let’s cooperate with the white horse by preaching the gospel of the kingdom to those who are in fear and uncertainty due to the pandemic.

Br. Andrew Yu’s Fellowship on Praying for the Ending of the Global Pandemic(2020/2/28)

Come! Let’s Pray for the Ending of this Global Epidemic on the Lord’s Day of March 1!

 

1 Tim. 2:1-2: “I exhort therefore, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercessions, thanksgivings be made on behalf of all men; On behalf of kings and all who are in high position, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all godliness and gravity.

Isa. 62:6-7: “Upon your walls, O Jerusalem, / I have appointed watchmen; / All day and all night / They will never keep silent. / You who remind Jehovah, / Do not be dumb; And do not give Him quiet / Until He establishes / And until He makes Jerusalem / A praise in the earth.

Since last week, the virus situation in mainland China has been gradually put under control, but there has been a sudden outbreak worldwide. The day before yesterday, South Korea’s daily number of newly confirmed cases exceeded China’s number for the first time, reaching a total of 2022 confirmed cases. Italy now has 655 confirmed cases, Japan has 214, and Iran has 270, with 26 deaths. San Francisco and Orange County in the US have declared a state of emergency.

God’s eyes are upon the whole earth. The Lord listens to prayer. The prayer offered by the world for China has been effective. We need to cooperate with Him, to fulfill our ministry of prayer, not keeping silent all day and all night. As those who remind Jehovah, we should not be dumb.

Brothers and sisters, rise up! We need to be the watchmen on the wall. On March 1, let us join one time slot during the 24-hour watchman’s prayer to respond to His heavenly intercession in our spirit, co-working with Him and paving the way for His move. Let us pray to the Lord of heaven and earth, the most high God, for

  • The ending of this global epidemic, the stabilizing of people’s heart, the restoring of the normal way of life, the Lord’s blessing upon the whole earth, and the whole earth’s turning to the Lord!
  • The Lord to particularly remember China, South Korea, Italy, Japan, and Iran. When the pale horse of pestilence runs rampantly, the white horse of gospel should run even faster, conquering and to conquer!

The more the saints on the whole earth intercede for one another and pray in one accord, the more we will experience the one new man; and the more we pray, the sooner the one new man will appear on the whole earth!

Br. Andrew Yu’s Fellowship on Praying for China (2020/2/20)

May the Lord Bless China

A few days ago, some government officials asked some brothers to pray for the Lord to bless China. This, of course, is the God-given duty and responsibility of Christians.

The Bible says: “I exhort therefore, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercessions, thanksgivings be made on behalf of all men; on behalf of kings and all who are in high position, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all godliness and gravity.” (1 Tim. 2:1-2)

Therefore confess your sins to one another and pray for one another that you may be healed. The petition of a righteous man avails much in its working.” (James 5:16) “And seek the peace of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to Jehovah for it; for in its peace you will have peace.” (Jer. 29:7)

And My people, who are called by My name, humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their evil ways; then I will hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chron. 7:14)

For we are not presenting our supplications before You based upon any righteous doings that we have done, but based upon Your great compassion.” (Dan. 9:18)

Truly I say to you, Whatever you bind on the earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on the earth shall have been loosed in heaven. Again, truly I say to you that if two of you are in harmony on earth concerning any matter for which they ask, it will be done for them from My Father who is in the heavens.” (Matt. 18:18-19)

In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” (Phil. 4:6)

Reviled we bless.” (1 Cor. 4:12)

And indeed the plague had begun among the people. So he put on the incense and made expiation for the people. And he stood between the dead and the living, and the plague was stopped.” (Num. 16:47-48)

The ancient church father Tertullian (155-240 AD) said:

“For we offer prayer for the safety of our princes to the eternal, the true, the living God, whose favour, beyond all others, they must themselves desire…Just because he [man] is less than heaven, he [God] is great. For he himself is His to whom heaven and every creature appertains. He gets his sceptre where he first got his humanity; his power where he got the breath of life. Thither we lift our eyes, with hands outstretched, because free from sin; with head uncovered, for we have nothing whereof to be ashamed; finally, without a monitor, because it is from the heart we supplicate. Without ceasing, for all our emperors we offer prayer. We pray for life prolonged; for security to the empire; for protection to the imperial house; for…a virtuous people, the world at rest, whatever…an emperor would wish. These things I cannot ask from any but the God from whom I know I shall obtain them, both because He alone bestows them and because I have claims upon Him for their gift, as being a servant of His, rendering homage to Him alone, persecuted for His doctrine, offering to Him, at His own requirement, that costly and noble sacrifice of prayer dispatched from the chaste body, an unstained soul, a sanctified spirit…With our hands thus stretched out and up to God…the Scripture says, “Pray for kings, and rulers, and powers, that all may be peace with you.” [(1 Tim. 2: 2)]

We respect in the emperors the ordinance of God, who has set them over the nations. We know that there is that in them which God has willed; and to what God is willed we desire all safety, and we count an oath by it a great oath…But why dwell longer on the reverence and sacred respect of Christians to the emperor, whom we cannot but look up to as called by our Lord to his office? So that on valid grounds I might say Cæsar is more ours than yours, for our God has appointed him. Therefore, as having this propriety in him, I do more than you for his welfare…” (Tertullian, Apology, ch. 30, 32-33)

Brother Nee said, “We should change our attitude. We should not criticize, curse, or slander. As long as a regime does not forbid us from worshipping our God, we should bless it.” (CWWN, Vol. 59, Ch. 9)

On February 17, the Jews prayed for the virus situation in China at the Wailing Wall. Shouldn’t we, the Chinese, pray more for our own people? Some believers have been praying continuously for the past few weeks. We suggest to set aside February 23, from 00:00 to 24:00, as a special day of prayer. During this time, let us set aside 15 minutes or more to pray to the Lord, individually or with companions, in person or online, for:

  • The ending of the plague
  • Peace in people’s heart
  • The stability and peace of the country
  • The restoration of the normal way of life
  • The Lord to bless China
  • China to turn to the Lord

Br. Andrew Yu’s Fellowship on Christian Living Under God’s Government (2020.4.5)

The Christian Life Under God’s Government

On March 31st, we practiced the 24-hour/21-day global prayer. In China, there were about 850,000 saints who joined this prayer. Outside China, there were 39,557 people who registered as 7341 small groups through the six websites hosted in the East, and 24,751 people who registered as 5273 small groups through the websites hosted in the West. The total number of saints is 914,328 (12614 groups), plus those who participated but didn’t register. For example, the prayer burden posted on 11 websites reached one million people outside China,. Thank the Lord for what He has done! May all the brothers and sisters who participated continue to pray steadfastly, and go on in a strong way. (For more information, please visit http://unceasinglypray.org).

Being Sober-Minded

“But the end of all things has drawn near. Therefore be sober-minded and be sober unto prayers (1 Pet. 4:7). Darby, brother Nee and brother Lee all showed us that the subject of both the books of First and Second Peter is “the Christian life under the government of God”. This government is not something only for the life after death or in eternity, but is something specifically for the present. The pandemic is now spreading across the world. Humanity has never faced such a severe trial like this. This is God’s administration. We face not only the outbreak of COVID-19, but also the problems such as the environment, population, refugees, economy, international conflicts, etc. All these problems are without solution. It shows us that “the end of all things has drawn near”. Nowadays all mankind, from the world leaders to ordinary citizens, has been plunged into fear. People started to worry about the future. In the verse above, Peter charged the saints to “be sober-minded”, which means to “be of a sound mind, have a mind of sobriety, and be able to understand things properly and thoroughly without being disturbed “(footnote 3 of 1 Peter 4:7), and also means to “be calm and clear in mind, able to realize God’s economy in His salvation…without being disturbed by fear, anxiety, or any care” (footnote 2 of 1 Peter 1:13). This is the attitude we should have in order to face the challenge of this epidemic. As a brother puts it, “during this time, let us watch less news, but read more Bible; worry less, but pray more.”

Being Sober Unto Prayers

This calm and clear life, without fear and anxiety, is “unto prayer”. Prayer is the center and the purpose of the Christian living. The Lord charged us to “Watch and pray” (footnote 3 of 1 Peter 4:7). To have this kind of prayer, we need to be watchful. We must pray steadfastly. We cannot be loose, otherwise the enemy could give us a sudden attack when we are relaxing. Because of the spreading of the virus, most people have no other choice but to stay at home. Psychologists suggest that people spend quality time with their family at a set time and in a set place. For Christians, we should much more set a time and a place to pray to God. For us, to have a proper living is not just to take care of our psychological condition, but “unto prayers”; not being disturbed is not for redeeming the time only, but “unto prayers”; having no fear is not an issue of positive thinking, but being watchful “unto prayers”.

Having Love Among Yourselves

Then verse 8 says, “Above all, have fervent love among yourselves…” Today this is a great opportunity for us to practice the church life according to the new model, which centers on loving one another and taking care of one another. “One another” in Greek is ἀλλήλων, which is used multiple times in Romans chapter 12 (vv. 5, 10, 16) to describe the genuine church life. It shows us very clearly that the genuine church life is centered on “mutuality”. During this time of seclusion in our homes, we should exercise to stay connected with one another, to take care of one another, and to implement the new model of the church life through the internet. This matter is “above all”. Let us minister the word of God among ourselves “as good stewards of the varied grace of God” (v. 10).

In the next chapter, verses 1 to 4 speak of the shepherding in the church. Verse 2 says, “shepherd the flock of God among you.” The “flock” here, according to the original meaning, does not refer to herds, but “little flock”, i.e., a group of sheep in fairly small numbers. In other words, it refers to the groups in twos and threes. Today, the online social contact in twos and threes provides a perfect setting for the saints to practice this organic shepherding. These “little flock” will produce “vital groups”. The elders should take the lead to be the “patterns of the flock”, shepherding the saints in the vital groups. Then all the brothers and sisters “in like manner” shepherd one another. This is the genuine church life according to the New Testament model. This is the way ordained by God today.

Preaching the Gospel

During the times of crisis, we need to “be humbled under the mighty hand of God” and “gird ourselves with humility”. We need to show people that they cannot “set their hope on the uncertainty of riches”, but they should humble themselves under the mighty hand of God and turn back to God. This way they could be brought through these difficult times and be exalted by God “in the due time”. We should keep preaching the Gospel by making phone calls, sending Bible verses to others by texting, and reaching out to people actively. We can say to them, “you could practice ‘casting all your anxiety on Him’, because except for God, no one can really ease your anxiety, which is ‘the whole lot of your anxiety throughout your entire life’, and ‘the whole life with all its anxiety and all its worries’.” We should speak to them the mystery of human life.

Withstanding the Evil

In the meanwhile, the work of the devil somehow prevails. He kills and hurts men’s body and soul, and “as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking someone to devour”. Therefore we must watch and pray, not only for the unbelievers, but also for the saints. May God keep all men away from the evil so that they will not be devoured by the enemy, and preserve their spirit, soul and body complete at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. May we recover many saints who were lost and bring them back to the fellowship of the Body through our prayers and care.

Remembering All the Saints

Finally, we should pray for the children of God throughout the world, for “the same sufferings are being accomplished among your brotherhood in the world.” We should pray especially for those who are ill, who are in need, who fall into afflictions, no matter what kind of affliction it is—physical, economical, psychological, familial…We should pray according to 1 Pete 5:10 that after they have suffered a little while, they will experience the Lord as the One who Himself perfects, establishes, strengthens and grounds them.

May God strengthen us with varied grace, all grace and true grace during this special time, so that the Gospel can spread continually, the saints could be perfected, and the church could be built up. “To him be the glory and the might forever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:11)” 

Brother Andrew Yu

April 5, 2020