The Resident Minister of the Pentecost International Worship Centre, Asokwa (PIWC-Asokwa), Pastor Dr. Joseph Ignatius Teye Buertey, has urged Christians to trust in God and remain hopeful in the New Year.
Pastor Dr. Buertey said this when he delivered his last message for the year 2018 titled “Next Year In Jerusalem” during the Church’s 31st December Watchnight Service.
Using Psalm 137: 1-4, 7-9 and Psalm 126: 1-6 as his main scriptural references, Pastor Dr. Buertey explained that Psalm 137 was written in a time of desolation and sorrow when the Israelites were in captivity in Babylon.
“It was a time when their captors taunted them to sing of their good old days of freedom. In so doing, they reflected on the days of Zion and the goodness of God when His presence was with them. It was a period of nostalgia which fueled the Israelites’s desire for deliverance” he said.
He explained that no matter the sorrow they were subjected to, the Israelites always ended on a note of hope in the next year and would return to Jerusalem (Zion).
To buttress his assertion, Pastor Dr. Buertey cited an instance in Ezra 1:1-4 when God delivered the Israelites from Babylon through a foreigner, the King of Persia, who took over Babylon and declared that, all the goods and properties that the Israelites had lost should be restored and then returned to Jerusalem.
Pastor Dr. Buertey stated that, just like Jerusalem, some believers may have enjoyed a period of greatness and happiness in the past, but are currently in a state of misery and sorrow due to some unfortunate circumstances. He, however, encouraged such persons to remain hopeful in the Lord and trust that in His appointed time He would cause the unexpected to happen and restore all that they have lost as a result of their predicaments.
Touching on Psalm 126, the Resident Minister said that the psalm was written after the redemption of the Israelites in Babylon. He explained that the six-verse chapter outlines the blessings and restoration of the Lord to the children of Israel in Jerusalem.
“In order to always remember the freedom God granted them, they added the term ‘Next Year in Jerusalem’ to their festivals. They greeted each other in this way after the benediction to remind themselves that though they were now in Jerusalem, the next year would be far better than the previous years,” he said.
Regardless of the troubles and tribulations they may have endured in 2018, Pastor Dr. Buertey urged Christians to be hopeful and expectant because 2019 promises to be a year of spiritual and financial freedom accompanied by many divine blessings.
Concluding his sermon, Pastor Dr. Joseph Ignatius Teye Buertey mentioned Restoration of Fortunes (Psalm 126: 1a, Joel 2:18-19, 22-27), Fulfilled Promises (Psalm 126: 1b, 2 Corinthians 1: 17-21), Peace and Pleasure (Psalm 126: 2, Psalm 128, Psalm 20:5), Progress (Psalm 126: 2-3), Power to Possess (Psalm 126:4, Obadiah 1:17-18), God’s Providential Care (Psalm 126:5, Psalm 91) and God’s Presence and Partnership (Psalm 126:6, Deuteronomy 28:1-4) as the seven blessings that believers should expect to receive and claim in the New Year.
Report by: Naa Adorkor Lomotey and Joseph Owusu-Ansah