The Lord has a great expectation toward us. The Lord grants a period of time to each one of us from our birth to the day of our death. During our lifetime, the Lord has an expectation of how we will praise, worship and exalt Him. Jesus has high expectation from us. In the dictionary, expectation means a belief that something or someone will or should achieve something. What is it especially related to? When some kind of event occurs, a variable can occur as well, relating to the particular event, if we multiply the possibility to the particular event, many fruits will manifest. I call this expectation.
Mark 11:12-24 (VOICE) The next morning, when they departed Bethany and were traveling back to the city, Jesus was hungry. 13 Off in the distance, He saw a fig tree fully leafed out, so He headed toward it to see if it might have any ripe fruit. But when He reached it, He found only leaves because the fig season had not yet come.
When Jesus saw the fig tree with many leaves, He had an expectation of fruit. Therefore, Jesus went to observe the fig tree but He could not find any fruit. It was not the season fruit for yet. But since the tree had many leaves, Jesus said, “Well, If it has fruit, I will taste it.” Jesus had an expectation. The Lord has an expectation when it comes to pastors, elders, deacons, and deaconesses.
When it comes to the individuals, God has an expectation on them as well. The Lord would say, “I expect you to come up to this(certain) level and your level of faith will satisfy My heart.” Or, HE may say, “Your faith level will easily pass this level of the test.”
But we tremble and become frightened with small tests. We would shipwreck our faith through some form of hardship. Then we would sin even more. We would fall harder through the trials and tests.
What should we do? Please repeat after me, “Jesus has a high expectation from us.” Jesus has an expectation from us but we focus or are too much attached to our outer appearance.
I call this “awareness”. People would say, “I am a pastor!” Or, “I am a Deacon!” Or, “I am an Elder!” Or, “I pray many times!”
Jesus had come unexpectedly and more quickly than the fig tree had expected. Jesus had desired fruit from the tree much earlier than the fig tree had expected to bear. The fig tree had its own timing of bearing fruit, but contrary to the tree’s idea of timing, the Creator, Jesus, had come too early. The important thing for us to remember is that Jesus will come unexpectedly and earlier than we think or expect. This is why we must not miss or waist the time that has been initially granted to us. Because we had missed and wasted the initial time that was granted to us, when Jesus suddenly appears, we will not be prepared. We will not be able to bear fruit when Jesus comes to us. It will be too late. We have awareness but we have not satisfied His expectation. There is no power or ability to bear fruit. When Jesus comes, and when we are not able to give Him fruit, we will be cursed. The Lord will rebuke us and say, “What have you been doing with all that time?”
There are many churches out there but in the Lord’s Church, the Lord has high expectation from us. Whether how we think, serve, and devote ourselves to His work, He expects a lot from the members of the Lord’s Church. I am not saying that the Lord’s Church is some kind of great church. But because the Lord’s Church preaches the spiritual messages and because you are listening to these messages on a daily basis, the Lord will expect more from you and I. Therefore, if we do not properly satisfy the expectation of the Lord, we will be disciplined and spanked. When it comes to the Lord’s expectation, it applies to all areas within our lives such as our resources, money, physical bodies, spirituality, people and other things. When we are not able to satisfy the expectation of the Lord, it is because we have not possessed the power or ability. But due to our “awareness” or “outer appearance” the Lord will come and will search for the fruit to determine if there are any fruit. The Lord will observe from the side, back, front, and inside of the leaves. But because the Lord would not find any, He will regret. When some kind of event occurs, the Lord may come to us suddenly. When the Lord comes to us, He will not only look for a few talents but He will demand many multiplied talents. This is a scary thing. When I hold revival meetings at certain churches, whether I hold meetings ten times, a hundred times or a thousand times, it will not matter if those churches do not pray. Many of these churches have stopped praying. If they do not pray, they will not be able to spiritually survive for a long time. Even if you say you have received the Holy Spirit, if you do not pray, the Holy Spirit will slowly extinguish His power and fire. The Holy Spirit will grant you power and fire but at the same time, He will quench His own fire and cease it. Why? When we hurt the Holy Spirit with our words, acts, behavior, and thinking, the Holy Spirit will quench His power and fire at His own choice. I often visit abroad to hold revival meetings. Although I hold continuous meetings, if those churches do not continue to pray, the power and fire will cease.
If you are the fig tree, you must bear the fig fruit. But in reality, instead of bearing fruit, our characteristics and personalities are exposed. It is a good thing for your characteristics and personalities to be exposed when you come to church. Your deception, lies, personality, and nature needs to be exposed and be crushed into a thousand pieces. This way, God can restore you but people think the opposite. They think when they come to church, they need to hide them. There will be events and through your test, you will be exposed. But when you are exposed, if you quickly humble yourselves and fix them, the Lord will restore you. Your fleshly character and personality need to be exposed. The Lord has a certain expectation from the citizens of heaven.
The Lord said, “I will come and not find fruit.” The Lord then cursed the fig tree at that very spot. The fig tree dried up from its root. But only if you come before God and humble yourselves, the Lord will restore you.
When we carry out the work of the Lord, the work become fixed. However, according to the circumstances, there are variables. In some instant moment, we can realize that we need to move or act, “I have to move now! I need to face it right now! I need to move so something will happen!” ” In other words, we need to have expectation regarding our variable. When some situation occurs and depending on how fast I respond or act, the power of that variable will manifest. The Lord approached the fig tree. Even though it was not the season for it to bear fruit, the Lord had come with expectation because the fig tree had a lot of leaves. This is the variable. The expectation regarding its variable is very important. In our lives, we frequently have variables of spirituality, flesh, the problems of our children, financial problem, and health problems. When such variables occur, what do we do? When some kind of event occurs, we must properly behave. Certain events are created with variables and when we respond with faith, we will receive the great power of the Lord. This is a very important thing to the people of God. There are fixed rules but at the same time, because of the variables, if we only properly flow with this variable, power will be created of many varieties.
When the fig tree did not bear fruit, the Lord did not say, “That’s alright, I understand. This is not your season. I think I made a mistake coming to you.” But instead, the Lord cursed it. He said to it, “No one will ever eat fruit from you again!” This is a scary statement. This fig tree never would bear fruit again.
When Peter said, “The fig tree you have cursed is dried up from the roots.” The Lord said, “Just Believe in God!” What does this mean? It is very important to proclaim with faith. Although your circumstances and season may not appear right, if you only proclaim with faith, it will happen. Faith is important. Faith is closely connected to prayer.
We always expect and predict things in our lives. But what if the Lord comes to you for fruit earlier than you had expected? Even when it comes to people’s lifespan and our lives, there is an expectation from the Lord.
We always say, “I will do it this way or that way.” But the Lord does not think your way. What is the expectation of the Lord?
When some kind of unexpected situation is created, do you have the power to predict? How are motive initiated? How well and properly do you follow the Word of God? Your outcome or fruit will manifest depending on all these conditions. The Lord granted freedom based on your faith. HE said, “Your faith saved you.” Even when it comes to sick people, “Your faith has healed you”. The bleeding woman touched the fringes of the Lord and believed that she was saved. The Lord turned to pay attention to her. The Lord was on the way to the home of the official, Jirus. But the Lord purposefully delayed and therefore the only daughter of the official, Jirus, had died. Still, the Lord paid attention to the woman who touched His fringes. When this woman touched His fringes, without her expectation, the Lord paid attention to her. “Who touched My cloth?” The woman came forward as she trembled. When she had come before the Lord, He said, “Woman, your faith has saved you.” When she touched the fringes of the Lord, she received healing from the Lord and her problem of sin was completely resolved. We are saved through our faith. The Lord will grant us freedom.
Our expectation is relative. We want to depend on something or someone else. We want to speak and counsel with someone. We are confused and cannot make up our minds. We become frustrated with little things, we complain, grumble, fall into a pity party, become anxious and nervous. This is due to our immaturity. We say we pray for many things but we already know the answers. Sometimes, we want God’s answer right now because we feel like fainting due to the problem. But it may feel like the Lord is ignoring us. Sometimes, the best medicine for us is when the Lord act likes He is ignoring us. The Lord already knows everything.
Let us compare the reality of the fig tree and ourselves. The Lord will say, “Give me fruit for I am hungry. I have come to get some fruit because I saw many leaves from the distance. Because you have many leaves, I am expecting fruit. It may not be the season for fruit and the condition nor circumstances may appear right but I expect your fruit.” The expectation of the Lord and ours is very different. The Lord related prayer, and faith.
Some kind of ability and talent is hidden inside of us. The fig tree looked very nice. But it only had many leaves without fruit. The fig tree had only possessed a nice outer appearance. It only had awareness. For example, “I am a pastor! I am a person who prays a lot! I have achieved some great things from certain positions! I have a high position in my church!”
Tens of thousands of people have visited the Lord’s church. Many who claimed to be “super spiritual” have come and gone. But no matter how great they may have been, they were shattered before the holy fire. They were turned upside down before the holy fire. The Lord shattered and broke them. When the Lord breaks and shatters people into many pieces, if the people only receive with humility, the Lord will work and restore them. The Lord will never pay attention to your fancy outer appearance. The Lord desires the deeper things. There are things that you need to go deeper and He desires it. The Lord desires for us to fill up our spiritual thirst and longingness. If you only want some kind of ability, talent, and holy gift without bearing fruit, you will fall into a danger like the fig tree. The Lord said that He knows the tree by its fruit. Then, what is the best way? The best way is that we need to allow God to prune the unnecessary branches at the right moment. I always have emphasized to you that it does not matter what you have achieved at your previous churches, it does not matter who you were at your previous churches, and it does not matter what kind of position you were in, once you are in the Lord’s Church, you must begin to die to yourselves. You must trim off all your unnecessary branches. In order for you to bear much fruit, you need to break off all the side branches. Only then, the Lord will renew us like how HE grafted the wild olive branches to the cultivated olive tree.
There is a huge difference between how the Lord remembers and think and how we remember and think. The Lord has an expectation and we have awareness. We live our lives by creating our own standards. “This person did this and that to me. This church is too big or that church is too small.” We live our lives according to what we see but the Lord is not like that. You must remember one thing. If you fail to carry out some things and therefore mistake occurs, or you refuse to carry out certain things with action, many things will be taken away from you. It is better for you to be trimmed right now so that you can bear much fruit in the future rather than having the whole tree cut off because we have not borne fruit. The Lord works in two ways.
John 15:2,3: Every branch that continues to bear fruit, He [repeatedly] prunes, so that it will bear more fruit [even richer and finer fruit]. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have given you [the teachings which I have discussed with you].
The Lord already had spoken to us. Therefore, only if we properly apply the Word of God, this means we are properly pruning unnecessary branches. The Word of God is alive and active. With such Word, God judges our thoughts and will. Through His Word, We must be convicted and transformed. After being convicted and transformed, we will possess a new relationship with Jesus and Father God. If we properly prune the unnecessary branches, the new relationship with the Lord will be created. When it comes to utilizing people, God powerfully utilizes certain people while gently and lowly utilizing the other one. We are like a salad on the table of God. We are all presented on His table together to do God’s work.
When we try to be transformed, there will be the devil that will try to kill, steal, and destroy. The thief does not enter through the door but climbs over the wall. Regardless of weather, season, circumstances, our emotion, feeling, and personality, God desires us to bear fruit. Bearing fruit will only be possible through the power of the Holy Spirit. When we receive the power of the Holy Spirit, the time will shorten. This means you will save time. If some things that would have taken fifty years to achieve, if you receive the power of the Holy Spirit, it will take a very short period of time to accomplish. With the power of the Holy Spirit, you must properly prune your unnecessary branches. This way, we satisfy the expectation of our Lord.
Sermon by Pastor Kim, Yong Doo
Head pastor of the Lord’s Church, Korea
Author of Baptize by Blazing Fire book series
Translated by Pastor Steve & Yoojin Kim
Pastors of Fire of God Church in San Francisco (Fremont)
Fire of God Church is a branch church of the Lord’s Church, Korea and is under the spiritual covering of head Pastor Kim, Yong Doo