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SPECIAL SUNDAY SERVICE WITH PASTOR (DR) MENSA OTABIL MESSAGE FOR 20TH AUGUST 2023

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TOPIC OVERCOMING MOUNTAINS DR. MENSA OTABIL

SPECIAL SUNDAY SERVICE WITH PASTOR (DR) MENSA OTABIL (GENERAL OVERSEER, INTERNATIONAL CENTRAL GOSPEL CHURCH (ICGC) CHRIST TEMPLE, ACCRA GHANA)

TOPIC: WORKING WITH THE NEW – PART 2

DATE: 20TH AUGUST 2023

BIBLE TEXT: LUKE 5:37-38

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Let us rise up together as we make our “DECLARATION OF GATHERING” in this “YEAR OF GATHERING“.

Are you ready? Say with me:

I Proclaim Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour. The Lord is the Shepherd of my Soul, my Shelter by Day, my Light by Night.

In His Name, we Plough our fields, by His Spirit we gather the Harvest, in His Light we seek and find.

In this Year of Gathering, the Lord of the Harvest has commanded: Launch Out into the Deep. At His Words, we cast our Nets, we gather in Souls and Substance for God’s Kingdom.

The Lord is our Reward; in this Season I received God’s Portion set aside for me: Full Measure, Pressed down, Shaking together and running over.

Nothing is Lost and Nothing is wasted in Jesus Name – Amen!

I am going to do Part 2 of the Message I started Last Week (13th August 2023) – “WORKING WITH THE NEW“.

 

Also see; open-heaven-25-september-2023

NOTES: You can get to read the Full Text of the Part 1 of the Series on this Link:

https://discoverymediacrew.com/Working-With-The-New-Part-1-Pastor-Dr-Mensa-Otabil

 

God is constantly bringing New Things into our lives. The Challenge is, how do we use them? And how do we handle our lives in such a way that we don’t lose the New Things that God is bringing our way?

WORKING WITH THE NEW – PART 2

And I’ll go back to Luke 5:37-38 (NKJV)

37 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined.

38 But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved.

Let me start by saying that, Jesus is not Teaching about nice Wine and how to drink Wine.

Jesus is using Wine and Wineskins as Metaphor to teach us about the Spiritual Life.

And so He is using what is Natural to teach what is Spiritual.

It’s always important to put the Teachings of Jesus into context. And this is a Parable, it’s an Analogy.

If you want to know about Wine, there would be another time for me to teach on that. But for now, we are looking at Wine from a Parable Point of view in the Teaching of the Lesson.

So Jesus is talking about New Wine and Old Wineskins:

 

1. The first thing He talks about is: NEW WINE.

The New Wine there talks about the fresh juice of the grapes.

When the grape Plant is harvested, it is squeezed and the fresh juice is what the Bible calls, the New Wine – It’s unfermented, it’s New, and it’s fresh!

It is New, it’s lively and it’s something that is bubbling.

So it represents a New Content, Fresh Content, Lively Content; something you receive that is New!

It’s like a New Word of Prophecy, New Word of Assurance, or something New that comes into your Life.

But in this instance, Jesus is using New Wine to describe His Teaching – The Teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ is fresh, lively, Changing lives, it’s Good!

Remember the background of this Story is that – The Pharisees had come to ask Jesus why His Disciples did not not Fast. And Jesus is answering the Question;

And so He is contrasting His Ministry, His Word, His Life with that of the Pharisees. And He calls His, “The New Wine” – It’s fresh, it’s lively, it’s sweet and it’s a Blessing.

 

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2. Then He talks about: OLD WINESKINS.

Old Wineskins are normally stiff and dry Containers.

Wineskins were used to contain wine – Like bottles in our day. But they were not bottles, they were goatskins that were used for Preservation of Wine.

And Jesus is using this to describe the way of the Pharisees. And He calls their Understanding – Old Wineskins.

In other words, old stiff Containers.

So the Old Wineskins represent: Old Mindset and Old Traditions.

Jesus is saying, my New Life, my New Way, my New Thought cannot be contained in your Old Mindset; in your Old Traditional Point of view.

If you are going to receive what I have for you, then something has to happen to the Container – The way you receive what I have for you.

And the reason why Jesus says that is because Old Wineskins do not stretch.

And the background to this is, in the making of wine – When the grape is harvested, there is a New Wine. It is put into fresh Wineskins; and then it ferments.

And in the Process of fermentation, the sugar is broken down, there’s a release of a lot of gases. And so there is expansion of Volume.

If the Wineskins doesn’t expand, then it’s going to ruin the Wine.

So that’s what Jesus is talking about!

It is similar to being Pregnant – You have a mother who gets Pregnant, and she is excited. New life has started inside of her. But that New Life is not going to stay – That New Life in going to grow.

So the womb must grow; and the Internal Organs would be displaced, and abdomen area has to grow.

If that does not expand, accommodate this new child, then the children will not reach full term and Probably die. And maybe jeopardize the Life of the mother.

Jesus says that if new Wine is put into Old Wineskin; if something new is forced into an old system, He says Two (2) Things will happen:

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1. First, there will be Wastage:

He says the new Wine will be lost – It will be spilled.

Something that is new is going to be lost because we put it in the wrong System.

 

2. And the second thing He says will happen is that it will be destroyed.

He says the old Wine, the Old System itself would be ruined.

Jesus says that the Wineskin itself would be ruined.

So there are Important Lessons that Jesus wants us to learn. And they are Lessons that we can apply to our lives, we can apply to different areas of our lives; we can apply to our Christian work with God, we can apply to our marriages, even to Personal Businesses, how we run them.

It’s always important that when God gives us something new, we are able to keep that new thing.

 

There are two (2) main Lessons that I want to talk about:

1. The first is that: When God does a New Thing in my Life, I must stretch my Life to accommodate it.

It’s just like the mother and the baby – It’s alright to be Pregnant, but if your System cannot stretch, then what brought you Joy will bring you a lot of Sadness.

That is the Practical Lesson – When God gives me something new, when God brings something new into my Life, He puts responsibility on me to be able to have the Capacity to hold it together; so that I don’t lose what God has blessed me with.

It could be the blessing of a new job, the blessing of a new Relationship, a blessing of new information, blessing of impartation of Anointing;

Whenever God impacts something new into your Life, there’s going to be adjustments.

The new Thing will not manifest itself to the fullest if we don’t make adjustments to accommodate it so that it has full expression in our lives.

… That is the first Lesson we learn from this Passage that Jesus is teaching.

2. The second thing is that: If I refuse to Change the Structure of my Life, I would lose the good things God brings my way.

– Jesus was God in the flesh with us.

– Jesus was the answer of the Prayer of the Jews for a Redeemer.

– Jesus is the Solution to the Problems of this world.

But Jesus is not a Solution just by Himself; He is a Solution when we also allow Him room in our lives, into our Hearts, into our Ministries, into our Societies.

And for the Jews of the days of Jesus Christ, although He is the New Wine, they didn’t make room for Him.

Pharisees couldn’t handle Him, Scribes couldn’t handle Him, Sadducees couldn’t handle Him – They couldn’t!

The Bible says, He came unto His Own, and His Own received Him not. But as many as received Him, to them gave He Power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name: (John 1:11-12).

When He says, ‘His Own did not receive Him,’ it doesn’t mean they didn’t tolerate Him – It simply means that they didn’t make room for Him; they didn’t expand to accommodate Him. They didn’t change their Minds to accommodate Him.

Think about all the good things that God has done in your Life.

We think about ourselves as a Church – God wants to do New Things in our lives; He has given us opportunity to Worship Him.

Do we have to make adjustments? – Yes, we have to make adjustments! We have to do things differently

If a Church wants to reach a Younger Generation, it’s not going to format its Services just to appeal to an Older Generation.

You know when I was a Younger Pastor: as you know, I started Pastoring this Church when I was Young – I was barely twenty five (25) years old.

And when you are that Young – You are twenty four (24) to twenty five (25) and you are Pastoring a Church. And all the around you are about your age or Younger, a few are Older. You wonder how to attract Older People.

So you find out that Pretty soon, your Church Service is being done to accommodate an Older Generation – Which is good!

Because God has done something to you, you have to expand it so it won’t be a Youth Church.

Because if you are not careful, if you are a twenty four (24) years old Pastor, your Church would be a Youth Church. It would be like somebody’s Youth Service and that’s your full Church!

So you have to find out: How do we accommodate other People that God brings our way?

You have to do things differently – We have to be more Structured, we have to start working with time.

Young People don’t care much about time – You can waste all their time and they would be fine in Church. But Older People have better Time Management.

So we became more Time conscious.

And all of that was done to accommodate a different kind of People from the People we started with.

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Now we want our Church to accommodate a Younger Generation because I am Older.

So I need to have Younger People coming in to Church.

And so as you can see, so much is done to retain the Older People, but also to ensure the New Generation will feel comfortable, and feel that, “this is a Place I can belong to”.

That’s why the Praise Team dress the way they dress, sing the Songs they sing. That’s why they do what they do. Why? Because God has given us something New, and we are stretching; we are making room. We are trying to contain it in a New Mindset, in a New Container and a New way.

And that will advise the way we approach everything in our lives.

I. When God brings something New in our lives, we have to Stretch.

II. When God brings New People into our Church, we have to Stretch.

We cannot say these are New People, they are Visitors, they don’t know our way. And so we make it difficult for them to assimilate.

If God brings something New our way, we have to Stretch to accommodate it; we have to open our Minds, we have to create space so that the New thing is Preserved by the Lord.

… In essence, that is what Jesus is teaching.

 

But I am going to try to apply this Principle to some areas of our lives:

 

1. The first area I want to apply it is: Our Work with God.

When God gives us something New, our Minds must be renewed to accommodate it.

Let’s say a Person is Born Again, he receives New Life in Christ. And a New Life in Christ is a Life of Righteousness, of Holiness, of Faith, of Joy, of Peace and all of that.

This Person Traditionally, is very fearful, very doubtful, is always worried, never cheerful and all of that.

But the Life they have received – The Life of Joy, of Peace, of Faith.

Now if they are going to live the Life of Joy, Peace and Faith; and their Natural Mindset, Culture, behaviour is worrying and self doubt; then there’s going to be a conflict between the Life God has given to them and the way their Mind (their Wineskins works).

And if their Wineskins doesn’t Change, although God has given them Righteousness, Peace, Joy, Victory and Abundance, they are not going to enjoy it.

The Life that Christ gives to us when we get Born Again includes Wealth, Prosperity.

It doesn’t mean you are going to be the richest Person in the world; but God wants to bless us. He wants our lives here to be meaningful and worthwhile.

And if you have a Poverty Mindset, then although God wants to bring Abundance to you, your Mind is going to shut it.

Your Mind is going to be like that Old Wineskin – Prosperity is coming to you, you say: I am Poor, my family is Poor, everybody is Poor, my Nation is Poor, I’m from a Third World Country.

Now, that is your Wineskin!

God is pouring the Wine of Abundance, of Prosperity, of Favour, of Increase into you but your Mind a questioning it. You are always talking very Negative – I cannot do it. I am not able. I don’t have what it takes!

That’s your Old Wineskin.

And God says: you are well able, I am with you, you are more than a Conqueror – That is the New Wine Pouring. But if you don’t accommodate it, if you don’t renew your Mind, then this New Thing that God is doing; being poured into your Life everyday in Church, in your Bible Study, through the work of the Holy Spirit in you; all that God is Pouring into your Life will be wasted because your Wineskin is stiff, is stuck, and cannot accommodate the New Things that God is doing.

I believe with all my heart, without any Shadow of doubt; that the Christian Life is the most exciting Life to live – It’s a Good Life, it’s a Life of Goodness, of Blessing, of Abundance, of Joy, of Overcoming.

Even when it’s dark, He is Light!

When we are in the Valley, He brings us to the Mountain Top.

That’s the Christian Life.

But that New thing that God is doing has to be accommodated in the way we Process our Minds.

So, when God brings New Things our way, New Blessing our way, New Words our way, New Instructions our way – Our Minds must be renewed to accommodate it.

Romans 12:2 says: And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your Mind, that you may Prove what is that Good and Acceptable and Perfect Will of God.

In other words, if my Mind is not renewed, if my Wineskin doesn’t expand, I cannot enjoy the Good and Acceptable and Perfect Will of God – I can’t!

Although God has given it to me, my Wineskin is going to spill it, and it’s going to destroy it.

 

That’s what Jesus is teaching – I brought New Life, but you to adjust to accommodate it. Otherwise it is of no benefit, it is of no blessing to you.

… So that’s the first Application of this Principle.

 

2. Second Application is that we can apply it to our Marriages.

Whether you are married or not, you can benefit from this.

When God brings a New Partner into our lives, we must stretch our lives to accommodate them.

One of the Challenges of Marriage is that we all start Life as Single People. We were Single and all lived our lives as Singles in our own terms.

Now that’s fine!

If you want to continue doing that, don’t bring anybody into your space – Just enjoy Life on your own terms.

But the day your heartbeat Changes, and you fall in love with somebody; and you decide you are going to build a Life together with that Person.

God has brought somebody New into your Life, and you can’t live the Single Life again.

I like how Adam responded when Eve came – Genesis 2:23 says: And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

Eve was the New Wine for Adam – The New Person that God brought to him.

He was actually asleep and this woman comes. And he said, I need to accommodate this woman. And how do I know he accommodated the woman? Because when Eve had a bad experience with the devil and got both of them into trouble, Adam said to God: Part complaining, part affirming – “The woman You gave me.”

In other words, Lord I truly accommodated this woman into my Life because You gave her to me.

So even when our lives have gone bad, I still believe you gave her to me. And he still stuck with her for many years afterwards.

When God brings somebody New into your life, it’s like New Wine.

You remember when you first fell in love and you thought you couldn’t live a day without the Person.

So how come now you think you don’t want to live with the Person?

Because the Wineskin is not stretching – There are areas that you are keeping away from each other.

And as a result, there is a spillage taking Place.

The Wineskin is the Mindset – It has to Change, it has to be adjusted.

You cannot live in a Christian Marriage and conduct it as an African Traditional Marriage. African Traditional Marriage cannot live in a Christian Marriage either.

The Christian Marriage is based on Christ, it is based on the Word of God, it is based on how He wants us to show love; not how Africans show love but how God wants us to do it.

When God brings somebody into your Life, you need to make adjustments; I need to, we need to!

If you want your Marriage to work, this is Simple Marriage Counselling – Expand, Stretch and accommodate the other Person and their Idiosyncrasies, their habits and all of that. And be able to accommodate them.

When God brings somebody New into my Life, I have to stretch to accommodate them.

 

3. Thirdly, Our Way of Life.

We must live our New Way of Life through a New Mindset and New ways of doing things.

And that’s what Jesus said in the Parable under consideration – “New Wine must be poured into New Wineskins”.

That’s what Jesus says – If you want to Preserve the Wine in the Wineskin, then both the new thing (the Wine) and the Container of the New thing must be on the same Waveline.

“New wine, New Wineskin” – Fresh Understanding, Fresh Thinking, Fresh Culture, Fresh Mindset.

And He says that if you do that, then both the Wine and the Wineskin will be Preserved.

Isn’t that amazing?

We can apply it to National Development, we can apply it to so many areas of our lives.

We attend Seminars, Workshops and there is no Change. The reason is, what we have learnt doesn’t Change anything about the Wineskin.

We still want to do things the way we have been doing it. We’re still rigid, we’re still stuck, we are still committed to an old way of doing things, although we are learning New things.

And these days knowledge is in abundance. We can read and don’t even need to travel to get it.

But having something New does not mean you are going to be New – Learning something New doesn’t mean you are going to be different because what makes you different is the ability to allow the New to be contained in a New System.

So this morning, I just want each one of us to commit, not just to receive New Things into our lives, to make the necessary adjustments, so the New Thing God has brought our way stays and benefits us and becomes a blessing to us.

Let us Pray!

And if you are here inclusive those reading now on the Label of DMC and you say Pastor, I want New Life.

And the “Real New Life” starts with the Life of Christ – When Christ comes into our lives He changes our lives.

But He doesn’t just want to come into our lives; He wants us to make room for Him in our Mind.- Renewal of Mind.

 

ALTAR CALL

If you are here inclusive those reading now on the Label of DMC and you want to be Born Again, and you want Jesus to come into your Life, you want to have a New Life and Christ Jesus.

I want you to put your Right Hand on your chest wherever you are as we Pray this Prayer together.

Say with me Heavenly Father; I come to You today just as I am.

I am a Sinner, I cannot save myself.

I ask You Father, save me from my sins, make me a Child of God.

From today, I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and my Saviour. I give my Spirit to You, my Mind and my body to You.

Lord Jesus, take over my Life, and use it for Your Glory.

In Jesus’ Name I pray – Amen!

Thank you so much for staying all through to read.

 

 

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