Back to 2023 Church Weekly List

Vol. XXI No. 07
12 November 2023


GAPPI Getsemani

We thank God for His grace and mercies in our lives and ministries here in Batam. We want to thank True Life BPC for all your prayers and support for us.

First of all, we thank God for His help and protection. He has enabled us to worship and serve Him every week. The ministries are doing well. Every Sunday we still can worship the Lord in the morning. We thank God for a new comer, Mdm Sianipar, who has been worshipping with us for several months. We pray for her husband to join us too. They were formerly from a Baptist Church.

We thank the Lord for all the fellowship meetings too. This time we have Teens Fellowship meetings. There are quite a number of teens who could come from Aviari. We fetched them together with the children who come for our Joyful Saturday Ministry. There are about 10–15 teens every Saturday. Therefore, the children will have their Joyful meeting inside the church and the teens will have their fellowship meeting outside under the canopy.

The Bible Study is continuing every Thursday night, 7 pm. The church members are coming to this Bible Study. This time I teach them from FEBC lectures on the Seven Stars of the Reformation. With this I pray that they will learn much from those faithful servants of God and catch the spirit of reformation. We thank God also for some who faithfully join via Zoom from outside Batam.

To reach out to teens and young people outside the church, I conduct a Fun Futsal every Monday evening. By this we hope to befriend them and invite them to come to our fellowship meetings and worship service. Thank God three teens came and joined the Teens Fellowship. Pray that more will come.

On July 19 we conducted Gospel Rally. Thank God 13 young people came. They were invited by our church members. Although they do not come to our worship service since they are Christians from other churches, we pray they may truly come to the saving knowledge of Christ and be faithful to Him for the rest of their lives. We have our next Gospel Rally on November 11.

There are two catechumens for reaffirmation of faith, Ella and Anggi. Please pray for them that the Lord will work in their hearts as they study in the catechism class. God willing, they will be reaffirmed in December.

Regarding the land, we thank God for His marvelous work. With the approval of the GAPPI Synod, God is telling us to stay put on this land and continue our ministry here. We have all the documents of the land under GAPPI’s name and GAPPI Getsemani is registered with the religious authorities using the address of this land. Therefore, we continue to serve the Lord here. Please pray that God will still reign over this.

We pray for God to bless us with a new building. I have called the church members to give to the building fund. We are collecting this fund in particular every second Sunday of the month. May God move the hearts of the people to give, and in His time to provide and build for His own glory. Ev Shobastian

China Missions Trip

Thank God for the recent missions trip to China. After four years of Covid, the Lord reopened the door for China missions. I am very grateful and thankful to the Lord for this very blessed and fruitful trip. Thank God for Pastor, the Session and the members of True Life BPC who have prayed for my family and me, and supported us in many ways. Truly, the Lord has been with us, gone before us, and prepared the way for us.

The trip to China was from September 19 to 29, a total of 11 days. During these 11 days, I have been to five places, and preached 11 messages. The whole trip was very packed, and I was tired in the body, but very happy and joyful in the spirit. The Lord gave me sufficient grace to do His work, and to preach His Word. People were receptive to the truth. Thank God for the sweet and warm fellowship with FEBC alumni and many brethren in China. “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” (Ps 133:1)

We flew to Zhengzhou where my brother picked us up, and we travelled to my hometown from the airport. We had a reunion time with my family in China. I took the opportunity to speak in my hometown church. It is a small village church. They love and appreciate the Word of God which was preached to them. I speak to them through social media three times a month for a few years already. Some of them are taking FEBC’s courses online. Thank God that this time I could speak to them face to face, and have fellowship with them.

The next day we went to Beijing by train. After we reached Beijing, I preached God’s Word in a church where brother Kenneth (FEBC alumnus) is serving. I preached three messages, “The Authority of Scripture”, “Covenant Theology”, and “Five Points of Calvinism”. After these three messages, there was an hour of Q&A. Thank God that they have received the Word with joy.

After Beijing, we took a train to Zhengzhou where there is a small BPC under Pr S Yong. The believers were very welcoming, and their hearts are hungering for God’s Word. I preached from 1 Timothy 3:15 on “The Church Is the House of the Living God”. They were very thankful to be able to partake of the Lord’s Supper after so many years. We had a quick lunch before rushing to another meeting where I preached on “Persevering in Persecution” to encourage the people to remain strong in the Lord in time of trials and persecution. In the evening, I preached to the Young Adults Fellowship, and encouraged them to learn from the life of Daniel, to witness for Christ in this evil and wicked age, and always put Christ first in their lives.

The next day we travelled back to Handan to a church very near my village. The name of the church is Grace Church. The people were very excited to see us there, and hungering for the Word of God. There are nine students from this church who have signed up for the FEBC’s Chinese online course. I preached to them three messages on the “Unsearchable Riches of Christ”.

Thank God that during the trip my wife Katharine who was trained in FEBC was able to teach the children God’s Word.

During my time there, the Elder of the church and some active members expressed their hope that we can help to conduct Bible seminars and children’s VBS. I pray that we will be able to help them. May the Lord help us to learn from our Lord Jesus, who “went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom” (Matt 9:35). By fulfilling the Great Commission, may more souls be saved and the saints edified, and may God’s name be exalted and glorified.

After the meeting in Grace Church, we took the train back to Zhengzhou. Thank God for the train tickets. Initially, we could not get any, as it was during China’s one-week holiday (Mid-Autumn Festival and National Day), and all the tickets were sold out. God miraculously provided the tickets for us. We were able to reach Zhengzhou on time for the Gospel meeting that night. The Mustard Seed BPC organized a Mid-Autumn Festival Gospel Meeting, and Pr Y Hui invited me to speak at the meeting. Thank God that there was a family of four who came to hear the Gospel.

In obedience to the Great Commission, Dr John Sung came to Singapore in 1930s, and the Lord used him mightily to preach the Gospel, and to teach the Bible. A great revival resulted through his ministry. I pray that the Lord will revive us again, and use us to preach the Gospel to many others, not only in Singapore, but also in the uttermost parts of the earth. All glory be unto God! ZJW

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