Summary: There is hope for the hopeless
OUR JUBILEE HAS COME
(A Sermon delivered by Rev Dr Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong, General Secretary of Christian Council of Ghana on Sunday January 26, 2014 during the Launching of the 50th Anniversary celebration of the Ghana Police Church, Accra).
Key Bible Passages: Ps 48:14 & Matt 4: 16
I give thanks to the Almighty for the opportunity to be part of this historic service. Moreover, I am grateful to the leadership of the Ghana Police Church Accra for the invitation. On behalf of the Christian Council of Ghana I bring you all greetings. May the peace of the good Lord be with you all. The Christian Council of Ghana identifies with your celebration not only because the Council has provided your church with Pastors since its inception but also your significant contribution to Christian missionary enterprise in Ghana. Today we have Police churches spread across the country and all of them have their beginnings from your church. We say Ayekoo to Police church. Let me also acknowledge the presence of Bishop Asamoah Okyere the Conference Secretary of the Methodist Church Ghana and Hon Kwesi Ahwoi the Minister for the Interior for accepting to join us in worship this morning.
I pray that the celebrations will provide us the opportunity to praise God for His faithfulness over the years, affirm some of our members who have distinguished themselves in the service of the church, heal the wounds in our history and set fresh targets for the coming years.
JUBILEE CELEBRATION AS A MOMENT OF HOPE RENEWAL
We have gathered here this morning for the launching of the 50th anniversary celebration of the Police Church Accra. Fifty years in the Bible is just not numbers. Fifty years have both spiritual and theological significance. Jubilee celebration as elaborated in Lev 25:8-17 was a period of forgiveness, freedom, reconciliation, fresh opportunities and a moment of hope. The people of Israel would always be looking forward to the 50th year for the Jubilee blessings.
In the New Testament Jubilee is not just fifty years but the coming of Christ. In Lk 4: 18-19 Jesus announced the ‘acceptable year of the Lord’. The fullness of the Jubilee blessings are therefore fully embedded and fulfilled in Him. The advent of Christ provides the assurance that the Lord is mindful of us and He will come at the right time to help. In Christ every day, year or moment is the Jubilee moment for the people of God. The Jubilee will at all time bring renewal of hope to the hopeless.
JUBILEE BLESSINGS THROUGH DIVINE INTERVENTION AND HUMAN EFFORTS
The Jubilee is an affirmation that God has pleasure in the prosperity of His servants (Ps 35:27). God is not just interested in the wellbeing of His people. He is also an active participant in the process towards the wellbeing of His people. He provides people, programmes, institutions, spiritual gifts and the church to facilitate the prosperity of His people. God will always provide the divine interventions, favor, support, guidance, protection, and presence that will facilitate the growth and development of His people.
However, the people concerned must also do what they are supposed to do. God during the journey of the Israelites on the wilderness provided Manna for their wellbeing. However there was a human effort side of the Manna. Manna never dropped into the mouth of the people. They had to go out into the field to pick them. In fact there was even time factor to the picking to the extent that if one does not do the picking on time the Manna turned into worms. When God presents the acceptable year of the Lord the Nation, the Church and the people of God must move into performance and do what they are required to do.
THE CRY FOR JUBILEE
There are adequate signs and indicators that point to the yearning for Jubilee blessings in our country and churches today.
SUICIDE: A SIGN OF LOST OF SELF DIGNITY AND CONFIDENCE
Life must be exciting and tomorrow must be worth waiting for. However, when people have nothing to hope for they lose their self confidence and dignity. The situation becomes worse when the people and institutions around them do not inspire any form of hope.
Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem but it has become a choice of some of our people. Suicide has become a big challenge for as a Nation. The ages range from Junior High School pupils to those close to retirement. People with all kinds of professional backgrounds: teachers, medical officers, security officers, bankers, married as well as singles are all reported to be committing suicides. Suicide is a sign of lost of hope in others and self.
National institutions and structures must inspire hope. Unfortunately a regular listener or viewer of talk shows may get very little signs of hope from our media. Even when the Party in power is doing very well for the sake of votes the other parties in waiting will speak so loud against it to the nation that we are doom for ever. On the other hand when something is just not right and hurting the party in power will want us to be convinced that that is the best we can have. There is too much propaganda experts around in media. Public discourse is too much politicized and therefore do not inspire hope in those who are hurting. We need objectivity in governance and public discourse. If something is good let us all, both parties in majority and minority say it is good so that we can help a hopeless person to revive hope.