20 Norman Spencer Dr
Auckland 2104, NZ

The Life Changed by God

Sunday, 23rd April 2023

Rev Daniel Xi An Poon

In Genesis 35, God told Jacob two important things, first thing was to change his name to Israel. Why did God repeat this to Jacob? Because even though his name was changed, his heart was not. Jacob didn’t pray when his daughter was raped, when his sons destroyed the whole city he still didn’t pray. So God told him to start again and to build another altar.

The Bible continues to call Jacob with both names because after Jacob’s name was changed to Israel, he continued to go back and forth in his faith. God has given Jacob a great promise, He is faithful and allows him to multiply and be fruitful. Israel  became a great nation, King David and Jesus all came from it. We also need to continue to renew our life, even though we are saved but throughout our life must keep on seeking God and offering to God.

Jacob’s name was given by his mum Rebecca, she wanted her son to be blessed. Jacob listened to his mum but at the time, God did not accept his offering. Even after his name was changed, his heart still didn’t rely on God. He made offerings to God, but he continues to rely on himself. When we offer to Jesus, it’s not about following the rules, it’s not about how much we do but how our heart is. We don’t like to spend time with God, we put praying and worshiping God our last priority. 

We have no connection with God, and Christian becomes a name tag for us. This is not God’s Will, we must reconnect with God and receive His blessings. When reconnect with God, people can see it from our lives. Do we bear fruits? Do we enjoy sharing the Good News with other people? Are we the same person at church and outside of church? We must be careful of our lives, to make sure our altar is really for God. He wants to bless us, our children, our family, and people around us, but what are our attitude towards serving God?

The secret to receive blessings is for the blessings to go through us. Everything we do is not by our strength or by our abilities but by God. When we have the hearts fully committed to God, we will not feel tired or burdened, but we will enjoy serving Him and serving others. God wants us to bless the community through us and He will provide all we need for us to partnership with Him.

Why do we worry? We think that if we don’t work hard then God will not bless us. But do we really know our Abba Father? He loves us and He will always provide for us, but if we hold onto the things of the world, if we seek our worldly desires, then we will never be satisfied, and we will not see God’s blessings in our lives.

God will show us the way for us, He knows our needs, and He has prepared the best for us. But we have to follow by faith, not to follow after we’ve seen the blessing, but to take the step of faith before we see it. When we renew ourselves, when we change our ways, when we reconnect with God, the blessings will follow us. God gave us a new name, He wants to renew us and change our lives. We can come out from our comfort zone, and be blessed abundantly!