In this awful time, the subject of our telephone lockdown service this week was the comfort of God which He abundantly supplies for us in every situation. (Tongham Christian Fellowship, Tongham, Surrey, England, lockdown service June 21, 2020)
Our guest speaker on the telephone was Don Hender from Bournemouth.
One of our three elders, Chris Roden, led the meeting and started by thanking the Lord for the ‘many beautiful things’ in His Word, the Bible.
Then Don asked us to turn to one of those beautiful scriptures, 2 Corinthians chapter 1 verse 3: ‘Blessed be God, even the Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort...’
He said God’s comfort was always there for us and our responsibility was to comfort others who had great anxiety and stress. Verse 4 goes on that God ‘comforts us in all our tribulation (trouble), so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble...’
He said God was the Father of mercies and we believers in Jesus Christ are His children. Our sins are forgiven; we are in a right relationship with the Father through Jesus, the Son. We have the certainty of heaven and eternal life.
We have been adopted into our Father’s family. ‘If that isn’t mercy, I don’t know what is!’ he said.
That letter to the Corinthians was from the apostle Paul, who endured extreme circumstances and yet was able to rejoice. Don said we are blessed with every spiritual blessing, and we could bless the Lord through our worship, thanksgiving and praise.
‘And what an opportunity we have today,’ he said, with so many people in fear. With Jesus as our Great Shepherd we could express sympathy to people, pray for them, witness to them that there is a Savior and His name is Jesus.
He remembered that when he was in a terrible road accident, he was able to comfort others in the hospital, because he knew that Jesus would uphold him, sustain him.
Believers had a glorious hope, a certain hope; there was no doubt about it and if you experienced suffering, you would receive comfort.
He gave examples of people in the Old Testament who had received comfort, including childless Hannah in 1 Samuel and King Saul’s son Mephiboseth in Samuel 9.
Now, in our day, the Holy Spirit is our Comforter and He never leaves us.
Don then had to leave us for another meeting.
Chris Roden opened a time of prayer and he asked the Lord to forgive us if we did not have a full relationship with Him and that when we come out of this situation we would be in such close fellowship with Jesus that His riches would flow to other people. He asked that the Lord would show us what to do when the door opens again for the gospel.
He said we were commanded to pray for Jesus’ return and that before He came there would be great judgements. He referred us to the book of the prophet Daniel, chapter 9 verse 24-27, the famous prophecy of the 70 weeks.*
He prayed for the salvation of Israel.
Someone else thanked the Lord that there are voices in Israel for the Lord in the messianic fellowships, and prayed for more people there to be saved.
Someone prayed for the leaders of Israel and that the coalition would have wisdom and that they would come to know the Lord Jesus as Messiah.
Somone prayed that the annexation of the Jews’ rightful land would be successful and that there would not be bloodshed and war.
Someone prayed that we would be kept from the love of money and be satisfied with what we had.
There were prayers for the families of stabbing victims in Reading, that they would come to know the Lord of all comfort through even that terrible crime.
And there were prayers for strong leadership to return to Britain and that there would be reform and Christian leadership.
There were calls for repentance for the grievous sins of the nation; that millions would hear the gospel; that the lies of the media would be unmasked; that those in our own fellowship who were suffering illness would know God’s comfort; and that the Lord would make us better witnesses for Him.
Note: In the prophecy of the 70 years, given to Daniel for the Jewish people by the angel Gabriel, a day stands for a year, so one week is seven years. It lays down a timeline of history, giving the timeframe for Jesus coming to His Jewish people as Messiah, and being executed for the sins of others.
It is split into three time sections, first 49 years (7 weeks of 7 years) to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, which had been destroyed by the Babylonians; next 62 weeks of years (62 x 7 equals 434 years) until Messiah was ‘cut off’ (killed, but not for His own sins).
That 62 and 7 makes 69 weeks of years, and 69 x 7 equals 483 years from the time of Daniel’s writing, the exact time when the Jews would be back in their rebuilt city and should have known from this prophecy that Jesus was the Messiah and was right there in their midst! But instead of receiving Him, they crucified Him. After the 69 weeks of years there is a gap of time, 2000 years so far, like the referee stopping play in a ball game.
So that leaves one week of years, seven years, which is still future. That will be the horrible seven years of the Great Tribulation before the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus in wrath and glory. Fortunately for us, the Bible tells us the Lord Jesus is coming first for His Bride, the church, to take us home to the Father before the terrible judgements hit the earth. So, please come quickly, Lord Jesus!