The creed was written in 325 AD the at the Council of Nicaea. And these are core doctrines. These are things we believe. Say it aloud:
“ We believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered at the hands of men, was crucified, dead, and buried. On the third day He arose again; He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; He will come again to judge the living and the dead. We believe in the Holy Spirit; the redeemed church; the fellowship of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.”
These are our core doctrines. These are things we believe and are going to continue to teach. We want the next generation to have these doctrines, these beliefs strongly rooted in their hearts. We want all of us to continue to live for Christ and live according to the word and the will of God. Come on. Praise the Lord for those great doctrines of the church. Go ahead and praise him.
Let us give God some praise for that. Alright, I want you to take your Bibles and get ready. We are going to go to Luke 19 and here’s another thing I want you to do, I’m going to ask you because I think as the coming of the Lord is nearer and nearer, we need to be even more diligent so make sure we’re hiding the word in our heart I’m going to ask you to take out a piece of paper notepad, a notetaker, whatever you have with you, even if you have to take a next step card right there and put these five things on that card. Do it. Take a pen and paper.
Prioritize and prepare is what we are going to do until Jesus comes
There are 5 things I want to give you in just a moment. I’m going to ask you to rate these 5 things at the end of the message. You will put 1, 2, or 3 next to each one of those five things.
#1 = I’m red hot with this, this thing is happening, and the Lord is helping me engage.
#2 = I could probably by faith do this at a higher level and I’m sure I need to; I’m convicted that I need to raise this up as we prepare for the coming of the Lord.
#3 = This is urgent. I’ve got to confess before the Lord that this is not happening, and this is urgent and I need to turn the direction upward in this area.
It’s going to be a one, two or three and I’ll tell you when we get there, but five things. I want everybody to write it down. So, when we get to the end of the message, we can ask the Holy spirit to help us evaluate those things.
A life lived with a consciousness of Christ’s return produces different results than a life lived without it.
Is Jesus Still Coming Again?
In week one, we showed you that the coming of the Lord Jesus is a series of events. We talked about 4 things that is going to surround the return of Christ.
Signs of the Times
In week two. We talked about signs of the times and we talked specifically about 4 things. The rebirth of the nation of Israel. We talked about the rebirth of the nation of Israel. We talked about the reorganization of Europe. We talked about the rise of Islam, Islamic terrorism, and we talked about moral decline and careless living. All of these are signs of the times that the Lord is coming. Again, the Bible talks about each of these as signs.
End Time Deception
Last week our focus was End Time deception. If you didn’t hear that message, I encourage you to go online, listen to any of them, but specifically last week. Because in the last days, the Bible says this, 1 Timothy 4:1, “The spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith…”. Listen, don’t abandon the faith in the later times. Don’t be one of those. There are things we’re giving you today that will help you and keep you from abandoning the faith. “…and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.” We talked about some things last week that are taught by demons, we talked about deceiving spirits, and we talked about deceiving men and the importance that we emphasize the keeping God’s voice in your life. Because when you don’t have God’s voice in your life, you will likely be listening to other voices and those other voices will be deceptive voices. We don’t want to be listening to deceptive voices in the end times. We want to be listening to God’s voice in the end times. And that’s why I applaud you for being here today to position yourself under the teaching and preaching of God’s word today. I believe you going to hear God’s voice. We are going to hear God’s words of encouragement for us as we continue to go ahead into these later times or End times, and we believe the return of Christ could happen at any moment.
How should we live today? What do we do until Jesus comes?
So, if that’s true, here’s the big question. How should we live today? How should we live this coming week? How should we live through the holidays? How should we live into 2020 what should we be doing? What practical things should be happening in our lives today? In Luke 19, Jesus lays out for his followers how they should spend their lives as they look forward to the return of the King. He talks about it in parables now. Parables are stories that deliver a spiritual truth. Jesus was great at telling stories. People leaned in and they heard the stories that he taught, but each one delivered this powerful spiritual truth and he told these parables about his return. He told about the parable of the virgins. He told about the parable of the talents. The talents is a very similar parable to the parable that we are teaching here in Luke 19 because Jesus knew that they understood the context of that day.
Jesus is the nobleman who went away. What should we be doing until He returns?
They understood about a nobleman leaving and going to a far country because that happened on a regular basis. So, so let’s read what Jesus told them and tells us in this parable in Luke 19:11 it says,“he spoke another parable because he was near Jerusalem. And because they thought the kingdom of God would appear immediately. Therefore, he said a certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom he was going away, but he’s going to return. So, he called 10 of his servants, delivered to them 10 minas and said to them, ‘do business until I come.’ But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him saying, ‘we will not have this man, to reign over us.’”
So, people, rejected this nobleman and the words that he was speaking to them and what he was asking them to do. We don’t want this man to reign over us. We don’t want this man influencing our lives and our future. Now, a minor was a Greek monetary unit worth 100 denarii or about four months wages for an average worker in the parable, the nobleman entrusts the servants with significant money and is expecting a return on his investment. He gave 10 servants, minas. So, it was worth four months wages just so they had a significant amount of money to do something with. So, he went to a far country, the Bible says, and in those days, a trip like that, or a business trip like that might mean weeks and weeks and weeks of travel. And so, the nobleman gave, other responsibilities to 10 of his trusted servants. He gave his responsibilities. As we read and we’re trying to say, okay, Holy spirit, show us what you want us to see. What do you want us to learn? The question we need to ask is, who is the nobleman? What picture do we have as we read this? Who is the nobleman? Well, he was here, he had servants and then he went away for a long while, but then he returned. Who is the nobleman? It is Jesus. And as a nobleman, an intermediary. He was an intermediary between the peasant class and the Royal family. Are you following this picture? So, the nobleman was an intermediary just as Jesus is an intermediary between us and a Holy God. Because of the blood of Jesus and his sacrifice, we have access into the very presence of a Holy God. Jesus sits at the right hand of God, the father almighty, ever making intercession for you and I. Jesus gives us a pathway right into the very presence of God as our intercessor, our intermediary. Now in the new Testament days when the nobleman said, “I’m going to a far country”. He had no idea when he was going to return nor did his servants. Transportation in that day of course was very uncertain, which is very different from today. We know a lot about trips it is so much different than it was in the day of Jesus. And when the nobleman went into a far country, they had no idea when he would return and yet the master expected them to be ready and to give an account of their stewardship and activities. Luke 19:15, “and saw it was that when he returned having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants to whom he had given the money to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. Then came the first thing, master your one mina has now earned 10 minas and he said to him, well done. Good servant because you are faithful in a very little, have authority over 10 cities.”
Wow. He just had this return on one mina to 10 minas. Now he has been promoted to be ruler over 10 cities.
“And the second came saying, master your mina has earned five minas. Likewise, the nobleman said to him, you also be over five cities.”
Not bad. Listen, I cannot stress this enough, Jesus always teaches reward and promotion for faithfulness. Are you hearing me? You ought to shout about that. He teaches reward and promotion for faithfulness, so as you live faithfully as you, as you understand that He’s called us to do business and be occupied till he comes. When we understand that and we are faithful, he promises rewarded and promotion. Back to Luke 19:13, this is going to be our focus for these next few minutes. I want to make sure you know what he’s commanded you to do until he comes or until he returns. Luke chapter 19:13 in the first part of our text it says, “so he called 10 of his servants delivered to them 10 minas and said to them, do business till I come” in the King James version, it says “occupy till I come”. In the English standard version t says, “engage in business until I come.” Keep being busy. Stay involved in what you’re doing. Chapter 19:13 “put this money to work. What I’ve given you do that until I come back.” If you put all of those translations together and all those things together, it sounds like this. Occupy, engage, work, do business, put this money to work for the master. Until my return. So, these words, I want you to hear this. Follow me now these words, occupy, do business are translations of the word Pragma. Pragma is where we get the word pragmatic or even practical. A pragmatist is a person who is guided by more practical considerations than merely by ideals.
Our ideal is we know Jesus will return
Ideals are important. What is our ideal? Our ideal is the truth that the Lord is coming back. Our ideal is we know Jesus will return. That’s the truth. That’s the ideal. That’s what we’re looking for. However, we’re also guided by practical considerations. Stay with me. We’re guided by practical decision. In fact, what do I do practically? I call it faith pragmatist. So, what do we do by faith? Practically almost sounds like an oxymoron. Doesn’t, it? Faith. Pragmatism. But when you are convinced in what you believe, when you’re convinced and you know what you believe in, it is the doctrine that you stand on and it guides life. And every day you are convinced of that. Now you shift to, okay, how do I live this out? Practically? How do I put it in shoe leather and honor the Lord until he comes? That is the message today. So, one final time.
A life lived with a consciousness of Christ’s return
Our key thought for this series is: A life lived with a consciousness of Christ’s return, produces different results than a life lived without it. We need to be aware, conscious, and focused on the fact that Jesus Christ will return. We as believers should live with the end in mind. So, when we live with a consciousness of Christ return, we’re living with the end in mind and it makes all the difference.
We need to serve at His pleasure until Jesus comes.
My friend, Mark Peterson, is a great leader because he’s a great servant and he has helped us in so many ways. Through the 15 years he and his family had been a part of this church. And from helping us build this building that we are in, to just me calling on him, to say I need to talk to you about this. And usually it’s a project. Usually it’s a renovation of something. And then we just needed, how do we do this? What do we need to do? And, and I’ll share with him my heart or my vision for something. And he’ll say this famous phrase that he uses with me, famous with us. He said, “Pastor, I serve at the pleasure. I serve with the pleasure.” Now, what he means by that is that I will serve, and I’ll help you any way I can.
If that’s your opinion and that’s how you want it done, that’s the way I’ll do it. Now understand this. He will give me his opinion. He will. He will let me know, Hey, I don’t think that’s a good way, or he’ll say, you know what? Now that’s neat, so you shouldn’t do that, and I want that. I want that feedback. I want that. And often I find myself going his direction, just like with my wife. I find myself going her direction. She has an opinion, so I find myself going that way. But with Mark, it’s like, Hey, no matter what I say, pastor, I serve at the pleasure and I’m willing to do what you need me to do.
And I believe in these last days until Christ comes, we need to take that same attitude and that same posture and say, Lord, I serve at the pleasure. Whatever it is you need me to do. Whatever it is you’re calling me to do. Whatever you have told me in your word, I serve at the pleasure. Jesus was history’s greatest leader because he was history’s greatest servant and there is something great about service. You want to be great. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “you want to be great, just serve”, and that’s exactly what Jesus taught and what he modeled.
Live a fact practical faith life as we await wait Christ’s return
Now let me give you 5 important minors. This is what the Bible teaches us on how to live a fact practical faith life as we await wait Christ return and I’ll spend the next few minutes with just 5 things really quick. 5 minors to do. These are my practical things to do until he comes. I’m going to give attention to these things.
#1 until he comes, I will live a spiritual life
I will live a spiritual life because life is spiritual for the faith believer. Colossians 3:1-4 says, “Since then you’ve been raised with Christ. Set your hearts on things above where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 when Christ who is your life appears, he will return when he appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”
Since I had been raised with Christ, listen, this reminds me that I’ve been crucified with Christ. Nevertheless, I live yet not I, but Christ lives in me and the life which I now live in the flesh, but I live by the faith of the son of God who loved me and gave himself for me. So, I live a spiritual life. I was crucified with Christ, but I’ve been raised again in Christ. That means I’ve been born again and he’s given me the Holy spirit that I can live this life through a faith lens, knowing that he’s going to return again and Colossians says, “seek those things which are above where Christ sits at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above whatever things are true and honest and just and pure and lovely and a good report. Think on these things. Set your mind on things above.” Yet we are all bombarded with things below or with things from below. The world is below. Things we engage with day to day, as good as they may be, they still may be from below. So often we find ourselves spending a good portion of our day or week or maybe all of it with things below. We think on the stock market. We think on investment strategies. We think on the next election cycle, Oh Jesus. We think on the SCC we live for football season. We live for the keto diet. We think about all the crazy schedules that we have and running the kids here and there. We are bombarded with things below and all those things are fine. They’re a part of life, but don’t get so distracted with things below that we fail to seek those things which are above, where Christ sits at the right hand of God, the father almighty. We have got to make sure we as faith believers, people living a spiritual life, we are focused on those things that are above. How do we do that well, by living a spiritual life.
You have to bring yourself and humble yourself before God while waiting on Jesus to come.
Now I’m about to say something very profound. You may disagree with that statement, but here it is. To live a spiritual life, you must live a spiritual life. You must practically live a spiritual life to be able to live a spiritual life. So, how is your quiet time with God? How is your prayer time? How is your soap? I don’t mean the body wash or use, I’m talking about your Scripture, your Observation, your Application, your Prayer, S.O.A.P. How are you with that time that you’re carving out to spend with God every day? This when I get busy, God is so awesome when I get busy. We have digital clocks now in different rooms in our house. So we’ve got them on our phones and it just seems, whenever I look at the clock nowadays, if I’m in a real busy season and, and I’ve just maybe kind of not spent that quality time that I want to, I will keep seeing 7:14 come up on my digital clock, 7:14 “if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray,” he is just reminding me, you’re living a spiritual life and you have to seek me. You have to humble yourself before me and seek me. How many of you need that 7:14 reminder for God to just bring in your attention? 7:14 until he comes live a spiritual life.
#2 Remember the Lord’s table until he comes.
1 Corinthians 11:26, “for whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.” Coming to the Lord’s table is an in times practical discipline and we are to do it. We are to be intentional about it. We are to do it practically until he comes. When we partake of the Lord’s table, it is a reminder that we are not waiting for a what? We are not simply waiting for the events that surround the return of Christ, but we are waiting for who when you take the bread and you take the cup, it’s about a who? It’s not about an event. It is about a who. It is about the bread. The bread represents the body of our Lord Jesus. The cup represents the blood of our Lord Jesus that was shed for us. When we take that bread in that cup, we are proclaiming the Lord’s death until he comes and that who reminds us that he is coming again. Revelation 1:5 tells us who the who is. “…Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead and the ruler of the Kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and has made us to be a kingdom and priest to serve his God and father – to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen. Look, he’s coming with the clouds and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him and all peoples on earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be a man? I am the Alpha and the Omega says the Lord God who is and who was and who is to come, the Lord
We should examine ourselves until Jesus comes.
The Lord’s table proclaims his debt until he comes. The Lord’s table is also an incredible reminder that we should examine ourselves until he comes. He reminds us in 1 Corinthians 11:28-29, “Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup.” In other words, if you don’t examine your heart for sin and the Lord’s table is a wonderful time to do that, examine heart and anything that offends God, you’ll experience judgment for your sin. That’s why John wrote this in first John 2:28 “and now dear children continue in him so that when he appears, he will appear and so when he appears that we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming.” Listen, I don’t want to be barely saved. I want to be confident and unashamed at his coming and if I’ve examined myself with the Lord at the Lord’s table with the bread and the cup, I can know that I am ready. Listen, I examine myself in my quiet time in the mornings. Jesus, the Bible says in Mark 1:35 “He rose up a great while before day and departed into a solitary place and prayed.” That is a great time to examine yourself. But the Lord’s table, we’re called to examine ourselves and do this until he comes.
One day, I was teaching about quiet time. I’ve taught about quiet time for years and how important it is, maybe the most important spiritual discipline you can have in your life. And I talked about having a daily quiet time. And then I talked to the class about the Lord’s table, about the importance of Holy communion. And Lizzie walked away from that stirred, she was just a new believer. She came to our little church and got saved. She gave her life to Jesus and committed her life to follow Christ. So, she was leaning in listening, okay, how do I grow as a faith believer? And she said, you know what? “I took your teaching on quiet time and I took your teaching on the Lord’s table and I put it together, I hope this is okay. I don’t know if this is okay, but in my quiet time, I take a little piece of bread and I take a little cup of grape juice and I spend time in my quiet time having the Lord, the Lord’s table, the Holy communion with Jesus and proclaiming his death until he comes.”
I said, Of course, that’s okay. That’s awesome because that is reminding you every day of things that we do weekly. We do Holy communal Wednesdays, we do Holy communion monthly here in our worship experiences, we could do it more often. I know some churches have it available every week. I think that’s awesome and maybe we need to do that more often just so you can be more intentional, not neglecting the Lord’s table until he comes. And I love that about Lizzie. She just grew in her faith and grew in her faith and grew in her faith. I have a feeling she’s still having that time with Jesus in the morning. So occupied, do business with God. Remember the Lord’s table.
#3 Until he comes to serve one another in love.
Serve one another and love. 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13. Now this one’s really, really, really important. “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else just as ours does for you. 13 May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and Holy in the presence of our God. And father, when our Lord Jesus comes, so you’d be Holy and blameless in the presence of our God and father.”
Help me to increase an overflow in love for others until he comes until Jesus comes
Jesus summarized the entire old Testament and the teachings of, of the profits in two commandments. And I’ll just simplify it for you right here. And when he said, “love God and love people, love God with all of your heart and love your neighbor as yourself.” Now the love people part of that, that love people command is probably the most difficult. Can I get an amen? I mean, God is good. God is wonderful. God is Holy and Yes, I love God, but man, it’s the people that I have problem with, why? Because people are often the most direct source of our hurt and people are often the most direct source of our pain. The apostle Paul knew this as well as anybody. He had been chased out of the city of Thessalonica by people who rejected his ministry. And yet he writes back to the church in that city and he says this, we just read it. “May the Lord make your love increase. May the Lord make your love overflow for each other and for everyone else cause He didn’t limit love just for those in the church. He said, your love needs to increase in overflow for everybody else too. By the way, all those everybody else’s, they kicked me out of the city. They ran me out of here and yet I’m telling you, God is increasing my love for them. Just as He’s increasing my love for you.” Come on, that’s a good word right there for us. God, increase your love in me for those who have hurt me, increase your love from in me. For those who have offended me, for those who’ve hurt me the worst. Help me love people. Mother Theresa said this,” if we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” John Wesley said, he was “a man sent from God to persuade people to put Christ at the center of their relationships.” Man, we live with people. We work with people, we serve with people, we worship with people. But far too often those relationships end up in disaster with hurt and bitterness and criticism and division. So, we need to ask God, give me an increase. Help me to increase an overflow in love for others until he comes until you come. Help me to live in that kind of love.
#4 Until he comes, don’t neglect your church family.
This is so practical, yet widely ignored. Hebrews 10:24-25,
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up, meeting together as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another and all the more as you see the day of the Lord approaching all the more.”
Plus, we talked about people that, that that that were abandoning the faith. That’s what it said in 1 Timothy 4, people in the later times would abandon the faith. Last week we talked about people that just said, “well, we just drifted away.” How much more do we need to be together that we need to be growing in our faith? That we need to be accountable to other believers. How much more in these last days is that important? And that’s what the scripture teaches us. This matters! What we do on the weekend matters. Gatherings for gatherings like this for worship on the weekend, it matters what we do on Wednesdays. It matters. Your small group matters. Your soul needs that encouragement. It matters, especially in these last days. So, we meet together, we pray together. We hug together, we eat chips together. We talk about God’s word. We talk about fantasy football. We talk about the sale at Dillard’s or Ross. Come on, help me somebody together. We do all those things because it builds us up and encourages us so much more. As we see the day of the Lord approaching together, we share our weaknesses, we share our struggles. We encourage our brothers and our sisters to stand with us, pray with us, pray with me and my family together. How much more do we need that? And I would say those who are abandoning faith, those who are just drifting away, say we’re not connected to a small group. We’re not connected to a group of people where we can be accountable to. We’re not connected to a church family. But somehow just said, you know, this isn’t important. No, I am telling you today, it’s vitally important.
Until Jesus comes be a part of a life-giving body of believers that can strengthen you and encourage you in these latter days and to spur you on to love and good deeds.
This is not just a promo for church attendance. This is a promo for being a part of a life-giving body of believers that can strengthen you and encourage you in these latter days and to spur you on to love and good deeds. Your church family is a minor worth investing in and it will strengthen you.
#5 Until he comes reach people for Christ.
This might be the hardest one for you to hear, because this might be the one that so many of us are not doing. So many of us are not focused on in these last days. In Jude 1:21-23 he writes, “keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. 22 Be merciful to those who doubt. Save others by snatching them from the fire;” Save others, save others, save others, save others, save others. Let me ask you a question. Who in your immediate family needs to be saved? Who in your extended family needs to be saved? Who are you very close to they’re still not saved? Who is it that you rub shoulders with every week, and you know they’re not saved? Here’s my question. Isn’t it time as we’re in these latter days to give them our all? To put them right at the top of our prayer list. To say, hi, I am praying for this family member. I’m praying for this person. I am looking for every opportunity to invite them to hear the gospel.
Until Jesus comes invite people to church.
You may not feel like you are fully equipped. That is one of the things I want to do in one of our we believe series very soon. I want to do a series on equipping you in personal evangelism, equipping you to invite, equipping you to share with one on one with someone to make sure you are confident to make sure that you are looking for those opportunities. What do we need to do or how, how can we invite? In fact, I’m not sure that we should even we should come on the weekend or come to small groups or come to all of our different things, without first asking ourselves a question. Is there someone I need to invite with me or is there someone I need to invite? Because I think there is, I think there’s someone that we can invite. They are someone that we can talk to. There is someone that we can reach out to because maybe they’re when they get there, just maybe God will touch them by his Holy spirit. Maybe there they’ll meet someone that they will be in relationship with. Listen, don’t keep small group to yourself. Small group is wonderful, but small group is another place where you can invite someone into that, that little circle of love that you have and let them feel what you feel. Let them experience with you and your small group is experiencing. So maybe there they’ll experience the presence of God and the conviction of the Holy spirit and they’ll turn their heart to you to God may be there may be there, there’ll be saved.
I was talking to a man this morning in our prayer gathering before the first service he didn’t even know what I was going to be preaching and talking about today. He said, “Pastor, I’m so excited about today. I’ve got a neighbor and just three weeks ago I invited her to church, just invited her to come. She came the next week and she gave her life to Jesus right here at Chapel Hill and today she’s being baptized in the 11:30 worship experience.” He should be excited. She was just saved. She’s just been saved because of one simple invite. Can I tell you that there is power in an invitation, the power of an invitation that changes someone’s future and their eternal destiny? Not just their future, but what about their family and their kids and the legacy that they will have? Just one person saying yes to Jesus because you invited them. Yet we get focused on what’s going on in our lives and we forget to realize there’s so many people around us and maybe they’re in your immediate family. You say, “Pastor, you don’t understand. I’ve invited them I a thousand times.” Well, how about inviting them 1,001 1,002 1,003 times because they need to be saved. Are you still with me? This is so important because the end of Jesus’s parable shifts and talks about those who don’t do these things, don’t occupy, and don’t look for the return of the nobleman.
At the very least what could you do before Jesus comes
Look what it says in Luke 19:20-27, “then another came saying, master, here is your mina. Which I’ve kept put away in a handkerchief.” So, he didn’t do anything with the mina or with what God gave him or the nobleman gave him. He just put it away in a handkerchief. He said, “for I feared you because you are in austere man.” Austere meaning strict or severe. “You collect what you did not deposit and reap what you did not sow.’ “And he said to him, ‘out of your own mouth, I will judge you. You wicked servant. You knew that I was an austere man collecting what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow. Why then did you not put my money in the bank that at my coming, I might’ve collected it with interest.
At the very least, you could have left it in the bank to gain a little interest.’” Could God be saying to us one day, “at the very least”? See, I don’t want him to just look at me one day and say, at the very least you could have, at the very least, you could have told somebody how good I am. At the very least, you could have told someone how good I’ve been to you. At the very least, you could have forgiven your, your coworker. You could’ve forgiven your cousin. You could’ve forgiven that pastor that hurt you. At the very least, you could have shared with someone or invited them one time at the very least. But the Bible says the man was fearful. He didn’t do anything because he was fearful. And I think maybe the greatest fear that many people have is, what will happen if I fully surrender my life to the Lord?
What would it look like? What would it be like? Oh, I can’t tell you how good it would be, but yet the enemy will deceive you and make you think that your life will be so radically different. That it will be an embarrassment to you. Know all it will do is bring glory to God and lead other people to be saved, to see a future people being ready, the return of Christ. But the enemy is a liar. People believe things that are not true. The Bible Luke 19:24 says, “And he said to those who stood by, take the mina from him, take that one mina that he put away in a handkerchief and give it to the one who has 10 minas, 24(but they said him, ‘master, he already has 10 minas.’). 26 ‘For I say to you, that to everyone who has will be given; More those who occupy those who do business until I come, those who have been faithful but for him who does not have even what he has will be taken away from you. 27 But bring here those enemies of mine who did not want me to reign over them and slay them before me.’” This is simply a picture of not being ready when the Lord returns and the penalty of eternal judgment.
All right, so now we’re going to do what I asked you to do earlier. I want you to take those five things that you’ve written down and I want you to carefully, prayerfully put a number by each one.
- Means I’m red. Hot one means man, I’m going for this, this is happening.
- Wow, I need to lift this. I need to put this before the Lord. I need to give some focus and attention to this very important faith area. I’m not hitting this very well. This is weak
- It’s like urgent. This is like flashing red light. This is like danger. You’ve got to turn that around by faith. Confess before the Lord that these are in the flashing red area. Lord, it’s not something that I’ve, I’ve given to you. It’s not something that I’ve been busy and occupied with. It’s not something that I’ve, I’ve given over to you. So, forgive me and help me to turn that around by faith. And when you do that, you are occupying, you are doing business. You are getting yourself ready for his soon return.
So just let us just pause for a moment and respond a one, two or three by each one of these five as we evaluate, Lord, this is where I’m at. This is what I want to give to you. Just take a moment and pause and talk to him. Just respond to him right now. Could you use this? Thank you, Jesus. Help us to occupy until you come. Help us to be ready for your return, to do business until your return. Help us to not to fear you, but to trust you. With your heads bowed and your eyes closed. The Bible says God became man in human flesh. He lived the life that we should have lived. Died the death that we should’ve died in our place, and on the third day, he rose again. Proving that he’s the son of God and offering the gift of salvation to everyone who grew, who would repent and to believe and call upon his name. Jesus Christ died for you. He loves you so much. He patiently waits for you to say yes and fully surrender yourself to his Lordship. He’s calling you to do that so that you can be ready on that great day of his return.
If you’re not ready or you’ve, you’ve made a commitment to Christ at one time, but you’ve just kind of been living for yourself. You’ve kind of strayed away. Maybe you’ve even abandoned the faith, but today, God has you here for a purpose and a reason, and so that is you could make a brand-new red-hot commitment to him. Say, Jesus, I want you to be the Lord of my life. The Holy spirit is moving in our hearts and he’s working and he’s drawing us to relationship with Jesus. Thank you, Lord Jesus. We’re going to pray together. I want everyone to pray with me. Pray out loud together. Let’s just pray this prayer of commitment because the Bible says in Romans 10:13, “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That’s a great promise that we have.
Pray until Jesus comes
So dear Lord Jesus I come to you in faith. I believe that you are the son of God and I believe if I call upon you, I can be saved. Jesus, I believe you died on the cross for me. Your blood was shed from my sin. So, I confess my sin to you, and I asked you to wash me, cleanse me, make me brand new on the inside. I believe you rose again on the third day and today your Holy spirit is in my life. I receive you. Holy spirit, spirit of Jesus lives in me, help me to live a spiritual life, helped me not to neglect these important matters and help me to follow you closely until you come again. So, Jesus, thank you for saving me. Thank you for giving me a hope and a future. And today I repent, and I turn to follow you. In Jesus name we pray. Amen. Amen. Come on. Praise.