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It is finished - receive your victory! Universal Church’s Good Friday message:

Categories: ALL THE NEWS , Faith-based
In Johannesburg, the annual event was held at the Ellis Park precinct which was filled to capacity with overflow crowds seated in the adjacent fields.

Good Friday   It is a meaningful day in the Christian calendar, and once again the Universal Church, one of the largest Pentecostal churches in the country, hosted prayer, praise and preaching events, themed Amandla Ngawethu 3.0, for thousands of members and their guests at venues throughout South Africa on 30 March 2018.

In Johannesburg, the annual event is held at the Ellis Park precinct which was filled to capacity with overflow crowds seated in the adjacent fields. Being part of this annual event to mark the day the Lord Jesus was crucified, is a life-changing event for those who have lost hope and who attend to find renewed purpose through the message delivered by the leader of the evangelical outreach in Southern Africa, Bishop Marcelo Pires.

Entering the stadium, dragging a large blue garbage bin, Bishop Marcelo confirmed that the purpose of this container was to deposit household rubbish into it, saying: “If we put rubbish in our pockets or in other inappropriate places in our homes, it makes us sick. Before we begin our Good Friday event, let us take stock of the rubbish in our lives, negative thoughts and feelings, anger, grudges and hatred, and deposit them where they belong: in the rubbish bin. Take a decision to remove things in your life that are making you sick, throw them into the garbage, close the lid and take the bin outside.”

Bishop Marcelo continued: South Africa needs healing. Our country is sick, because we are sick. There are rifts in families and many people don’t speak to others because they upset them in the past. We need to rid our hearts and minds of this negativity, throw the issues into the rubbish, ask for forgiveness and live a new life, free from resentment, bitterness and attitudes which restrict us from living our best life.

He said: “If you want a different life, if you want your life to change today, it depends on you, not on God.  If you decide to forgive your enemies, love those who hate you, remove hatred, judgment and racism from your heart and mind, and decide to live by what you think, in accordance with the Word of God, rather than by feelings and emotions, your life will change. Throw all this rubbish in the garbage bin. As the Lord Jesus declared as He died on the cross more than 2 000 years ago: It is finished!  All those who believe in God, and in themselves, have the ability to transform their lives through the power of the Holy Spirit. From today, live a new life. Leave the past and look forward.

Bishop Marcelo said: God has brought each one of you here today, to change your life. Now, we need to position ourselves to be a winner and to take action. Winners use their intelligence. They do not rely on emotions and feelings, or wait for things to happen. It is time to act.

The Good Friday teaching was taken from the book of Isaiah 41:9 -10: You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called from its remotest parts, and said to you, “You are My servant; I have chosen you and have not rejected you.” Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will help you, yes, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

Explaining the passage, Bishop Marcelo said that those described as being at the ends of the earth are those who have been forgotten by society or shunned by their families. They have become hopeless and desperate. Their lives are a constant struggle, but God has not cast them away. He said: “God is with you, even if you have moved away from Him. He is your God. He will strengthen, protect and empower you. This will transform your life forever.”

Although faith is important, it is essential to believe in yourself too. Bishop Macelo said: “Believe in yourself, knowing God is helping you. Focus on your talents and abilities and be the best you can be. Excel in everything you undertake. Don’t be afraid of problems or challenges, because you will encounter them, but you can use them to your advantage. Think about what you are going to do in the situation and take action. Your situation will change. How? Because God chose you to be a winner. Remember God’s promise: I am with you. Do not be afraid. Focus on your dreams and go forward.”

The service ended with the capacity crowd of 64 000 committing their lives into the hands of God, acknowledging that their lives belonged to God who is with them, and repeating the Good Friday message: It is finished.

Before the spiritual part of the programme began, the crowd was entertained by the Youth Power Group and the Universal Church Choir. Testimonies were shared from people who had been desperate, but whose lives had been transformed through the power of the Holy Spirit.

For further information, please contact the church’s public relations department on 011 224 3400 or pr@uckg.org.za

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