Volume. XXXIII, No. 50
Sunday, 09 June 2019

From the Pastor’s Heart: Why Not Believe?

As I am sitting in my sister’s dining room, early in the morning around 3:30 am, my mind is travelling around from one thought to another.  Mainly I am thinking about belief and unbelief, fallacies of some aspects of spirituality, the human mind, and the current and future state of our church.  You may wonder why my mind is busily engaged at such an early morning hour.  Well, in fact, I have been between sleep and awake since 12:40 am.  Burdens are heavy and I have been under the crushing weight of burdens for a while. These burdens have led me to think of the Lord’s sighs and tears and to understand more clearly the burdens in the mind of Apostle Paul.  Their burdens become real to me.  It is all about your and my faith or unbelief, and about the present and future of our church and Christianity overall. 


I believe that all who are reading this article are professing believers.  Otherwise, who wants to read this dry and boring writing?  We claim to be believers of the Almighty God and sing praises unto Him for the blessed hope of eternal life.  However, I have seen and found great discrepancies between our confession (words, declarations, or expressions) and life (actions and deeds).  These discrepancies are also one of the biblical dilemmas we can find from God’s own people.  For example, the children of Israel cried unto God to be released from the bondage of the Egyptians.  God was merciful and called Moses to go and to deliver them.  Moses said in Exodus 4:1, “And Moses answered and said, But, behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The LORD hath not appeared unto thee.”  The Lord concurred with him about their potential of not believing in Moses and Himself in Exodus 4:8-9a, “And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign. 9 And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice . .  .”  Their spirituality contains aspects of  both “belief” and “unbelief”.  However, these discrepancies were not only the problems of the children of Israel but also of the leaders themselves.  Thus, they could not escape the Lord’s chastisement as found in Numbers 20:12, “And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land . . ..”


The Lord’s rebuke of “believing” and “not believing” is real in the Gospels.  I’ll give you only a few examples from the Gospel of Matthew.  However, you can use any Bible software to find all references which have “believe,” “not believe,” or “believe not.”  Here are a few samples of “little faith” and “little faith with doubt”.   Matthew 6:30, “Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?”  8:26, “And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.”  A righteous man, Zacharias, had to be rebuked by an angel for his unbelief in Luke 1:20, “And, behold, thou shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall be performed, because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season.”  I have found the same sort of discrepancies of believing and not believing in you and me, believers of Jesus Christ. 


Do the Hopefuls really believe in the Almighty God and His Word?  Are they committed to the Lord by keeping His commandments?  Do they really believe that God still calls His people and enables them to do His work?  Or, their confessions are good, exemplary, commendable, but they are not ready to live according to their confessions?  Do they really believe that they must be faithful even unto death?  A couple of days ago, I was reading Colossians again.  When I came to chapter 4, a couple of verses caught my eyes.  Having mentioned names like Onesimus, Aristarchus, Marcus, and Justus (verses 9-11a), Paul says, “These only are my fellow workers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me.”  He must have a huge pool of Christians in his ministry, but he said that only they were his fellow workers.  I thought that there might be some translational errors.  I checked the Greek Bible, and there is a word for “only” right front of the word for “fellow-workers.”  Out of so many professing believers around Paul, only they were his fellow workers for the kingdom of God.  How about Hope Church and me?  Of course, this question should make us ashamed of ourselves. 



Then, a question arises: “why believers do not really believe by practicing what they have claimed to believe?”  Why are there only a few committed believers amongst the multitude of professing believers?  Why are there so few who are working for the kingdom of God?  They believe in God and desire to go to heaven, but their faith is only selfish to attain to what they want.  They want the kingdom of God but do not live for it.  Where is this discrepancy coming from?  How about the children of Israel, Moses and Aaron, chief priests, Pharisees, and Sadducees?  If we analyse the biblical data, most of the professing believers think that they do believe but live a life of unbelief and have a lack of belief with doubts, which accompanies a lack of commitment to the work of the Lord’s kingdom.  They say that they died in Christ but they still live for themselves, extremely selfishly.  They are not conscientious of their own spiritual discrepancies.  Why? 


I conclude that many of us believe what we like to believe.  Our confession of faith is used to justify what we want to believe.  Thus, we are happy that we are believers on the one hand, and we are not following the steps of Jesus but can justify our life of unbelief.  I am not sure how many of us believe that the earth is flat, not round.  If we look at Google Earth, we can easily know that the earth is round.  There are so many photos and video images of the earth taken from space.  However, it must surprise us that there are still people who believe in a flat earth!  Logan Paul released a documentary style video about his theory of flat earth and said, “I think I’m coming out of the flat Earth closet.”  There are at least 800 YouTube videos about a flat earth.  People who believe it have their own conventions and encourage each other.  They expand and spread their belief to others, too.  They attract people who are looking to believe in these kinds of things, looking for things to confirm what they believe.  They eventually negate or dilute scientific reason.


The same thing happens within Christian churches amongst professing believers.  They say that they believe in what Jesus says, such as “So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:33).  Many confess and confirm its truthfulness, but I know that most of them do not practice it and don’t even feel ashamed of themselves.  Their confession is one thing, but they believe in whatever they want to believe and justify themselves.  It is clearly shown especially in the service of God.  As a result, there are huge harvests before us, but only few laborers.  They do not know that they are wrong.  If I use a secular term to refer to such phenomena, it is “Truth Decay”.  They have blurred the line between truth and opinion.  Many professing believers believe in God based on their opinions of Him, not the truth.  They serve God according to their opinions not the demands from the truth.  Truth Decay becomes a real phenomenon amongst professing believers.  Ah, who will rise up against such a secular and fleshly mind and understand the heart of God?  Who will come forward to give themselves for the kingdom of God?  Who are the co-workers of Christ in Hope Church?  Who will stand up for Christ Jesus?  Why not believe, truly believe in truth and do the truth?  Young and old, men and women, who will?



Your Pastor


More Lively Hope



  • Anniversary Thanksgiving greetings from: Singapore – Bro Charles & Sis Joanne Tan; Bro Kang Fun & Sis Adeline Tan & family; Sis Geok Hoon Leong; Bandung – Sis Esther Kim; USA – Bro Nathaniel Lim; London – Bro Jonathan Kim.
  • Special thanks to Sis Sally Teng for organising the Combined Instrumental Ensemble; Sis Marion Chan for organising the Choir; & participants for the Anniversary Thanksgiving Service.
  • Please observe all parking signs when parking your vehicles on council property. Please DO NOT block our neighbours’ driveways & DO NOT park along the streets north & west of our church compound (on Bedford Sq.).
  • Lunch Duty: This week: Volunteers. Next week: AFG.  


Praise & Thanksgiving

  • 33rd Anniversary Thanksgiving Service last week.
  • God’s daily provision, guidance & protection.
  • Wellspring Bible Church (Glen Waverley) Inaugural Worship Service last week.
  • Journey mercies: Those who have travelled.



  • Healing: Pastor Ki; Rev George van Buuren; Rev Pong Sen Yiew (S’pore); and others in affliction.
  • God’s comfort in grief – Dn Wai Kin Wong & family; Mrs Edward Meyale & family.
  • Missions: Rev Sun Sokha & family; Faith Krang Angkrang Church (PhnomPenh).
  • Those away: Pastor Okman & Sis Myung Ki (S’pore/Korea).
  • Journey mercies: Those who are travelling.







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14 Bedford Square, Colonel Light Gardens, South Australia 5041