Hope To The End. .Articles
PREPARING FOR OUR LORD'S COMING
( Holiness Living--Godliness--Righteousness )
In 2 Thessalonians
Chapter 2, we are told that 2 events will precede
the coming of our Lord at the Rapture:
1. Apostasy (falling away from Biblical Faith) and
2. The man of sin will sit in the temple showing himself as God.
The Apostasy is already underway by major religions endorsing Inclusiveness (all religions are equal).
True Christians know and believe that there is no other name given under heaven (than JESUS) whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
"I am the way , the truth and the Life. No man comes to the Father but by Me" John 14:6
Eventually every tongue will confess that Jesus, the Lamb, is Lord alone. ( accessable website )
Philippians 2:9-11 and Revelation 5:13
But until that time, true Christians must remain separated from the world:
"be ye separate" 2 Corinthians 6: 17 and "come out of her My people" Revelation 18:4.
We are to be unaffiliated and unattached to "churches" joined with URI, United Religions Initiative, or any other inclusive philosophy. ( universalism , syncretism etc.). Even some "evangelistic" ministries are ecumenical, disregarding doctrine.
"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers:
for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness?
And what communion hath light with darkness ?"
"And what concord hath Christ with Belial?
Or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel (unbeliever).
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?......
wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord,
and touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you". 2 Corinthians 6:14--18
"The whole world lieth in wickedness" 1 John 5:19
"Keep yourselves from idols" 1 John 5:21
We must ever keep in mind that there are two groups of people within the Church...
the Wheat and the Tares ( weeds ). Matthew 13.
Not all who say, "Lord, Lord, " actually obey Him. Matthew 7:21--23
Now the only sign remaining for the grand exodus [ Rapture] of the true Church is for the man of sin to sit in the Temple showing himself as God.
2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4
"and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped;
so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God."
This is soon to take place, as world events hover over Jerusalem and the Temple Mount.
The Bible says here that the man of sin
( note he is not called "antichrist" or the "beast" just yet)
SHOWS himself as God....that there is a demonstrative action on his part that is a blasphemous action. Possibly, that action could be his sitting on the newly discovered Ark of the Covenant (the Mercy Seat) which could be preserved below the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
That would be a very VISIBLE sign to those who understand such an implication, namely the Jewish people. This is a visual expression. It is so subtle and sophisticated, that only the WORD-Wise will understand. The very, very Word-wise will also know Jeremiah 3:16, which tells us to not regard the Ark of the Covenant at all. Please see http://hopetotheend.com/lost.html
That is why Our Lord tells us over and over again in the Gospels to "WATCH".
"And what I say unto you I say unto all, WATCH ! Mark 13:35
Now since one of the signs (of 2 Thessalonians Chapter 2 ) is already here ( Apostasy) and the other sign is shortly to follow, we realize that the Lord's return is SOON. How then should we prepare ourselves ?
How should we get our house in order and prepare to meet Our God ? Amos 4:12
What steps of spiritual preparation are in order ?
Well, here are a few suggestions. The Holy Spirit will give more whenever a person asks.
1. LETTING GO
Let go of all relationships, friendships, grudges, bitterness, affiliations, organizations, distractions etc. that come between you and your relationship with the Lord.
These people have " a form of godliness, but deny the Power thereof: from such turn away"
2 Timothy 3:5.
That is a commandment--- to turn away from those who sound good, but don't walk the walk.
May we hear the voice of Common Sense.
The HOLY SPIRIT is the power thereof in our assemblies. Is His power evident ? (accessable website )
"Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good" (by prayer). Romans 12:21
We must keep in mind that forgiveness is not necessarily fellowship.
Forgiveness is not harboring resentment, hatred or bitterness. Forgiveness is not seeking revenge.
And still, in many cases forgiveness still requires one to practice total avoidance.
"Ye must be separate." 2 Corinthians 6: 17 .
What communion hath light with darkness? 2 Corinthians 6:14.
"From such turn away" 2 Timothy 3: 1--5
Forgiveness means praying for our enemies and not carrying a grudge. But even so, forgiveness does not take away discernment, common sense or discretion. If the offending party is not Born Again, there is little in common.
Avoid disputes. "Behold, The Judge standeth before the door" James 5:9
It's hard to end quarrels, and best not to let any start, especially in your own home.
"If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men" Romans 12: 18 (without compromise)
We must pray to the Holy Ghost for guidance in this area. Everything is not always black and white, so great discernment is necessary.
Let us draw upon the WORD for guidance in this area:
"Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us." Hebrews 12:1
In Acts 27: 18 and 19, Paul and the crew on the ship threw everything overboard, in order that they themselves could be spared.
"But those things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
Yea, doubtless, and I count ALL things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of ALL things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ."
Philippians 3: 7, 8 .
Letting go is not easy, but in many cases it is necessary.
2. STAYING IN THE WORD, DAILY
Now that we are free and unencumbered to run the race, let us focus, intensify and deepen our relationship with Jesus Christ on a daily basis by reading, studying and memorization of the WORD (Bible, Scriptures)
hopetotheend.com/ntl.html -- Got a Concordance ?
If we don't have time, then let us MAKE TIME. That may mean getting up earlier, staying up later, or taking time on our lunch hour etc. , but we ought to do Something to impress the WORD of God upon our hearts.
Since television programming is deteriorating so rapidly, we now have more time to read the Word each evening.
Here are some good suggestions for preparing our hearts :
1 Thessalonians 5:14-22... having patience, thanksgiving, being open to the Spirit, and more.
Hebrews 12:2 ... Keeping our eyes on Jesus ... 13:5 no covetousness
2 Peter 3:11 ... holy conversation and godliness
Luke 2:8 .... bringing forth fruits worthy of repentance
Luke 2:11-14 ..... sharing; being just and fair
"Do violence to no man (gossip is a form of violence...violating a person's reputation)
Neither accuse any falsely, and be content with your wages."
Proverbs......a chapter a day...each and every month (chapter = date )
Psalm 15... righteousness, truth (no gossips or slanderers); words of commitment;
being rigorously honest. We are to be a persons of integrity.
The whole Book of James is an excellent reality-check.
Chapter 1:19-27 restraining our mouths; compassionate to widows, no worldliness.
Ch. 2-no respecter of persons...no pride of life
Ch. 3-no tale bearer...restrained tongue (thinking before speaking)
Ch. 4- no friendship with the world. Submit to God. Resist the devil. Practice humility.
Ch. 5-put no trust in accumulated goods. Anoint the sick. Confess your faults.
Pray for each other. And so much more.
Ephesians 6: 1- 4 and Colossians 3 : 20,21 ...obedience to parents; Godly parenting
--same chapter: wives submissive to husbands...husbands loving toward wives
--being a good employee and employer. Work as unto the Lord. Ephesians 6:7
Romans 12... our bodies a living sacrifice...renewing our mind ;v.9 being sincere (without sham)
Romans 13...Submit to lawfulness. Pay taxes. Pay off debts. Practice honesty
1 Timothy 6:10 ...no love of money...... "filthy lucre" (bribes, grants) 1 Peter 5:2
2 Timothy 4-- read ALL...Paul's Swan-Song....final farewell to the Church before martyrdom.
All of Philippians 4 ; be reasonable "let your moderation be known to all men"
1 John :
2 : 15, 16....keep from worldliness, pride of life, prestige, the flesh and the devil
3 :14...love the brethren (fellow practicing believers): courtesy, kindness, care.
Ch. 4 - practice discernment in spiritual matters
Ch 5 - feed your FAITH and starve your doubts
1 Corinthians 13-- practice charity (Godly care). Charity begins at home.
This is a good one to read every day.
"Charity (Godly care) shall cover the multitude of sins". 1 Peter 4:8
Matthew 25 : 31- 46 ( works of mercy) concern for the welfare of others. Freely give. Matthew 10:8
Those are just a few passages. There are so many more.
The WORD Purifies
How does a person stay pure? By reading the Word. Psalm 119: 9-11
"Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way ? by taking heed thereto according to thy word."
Pass it along: www.porn-free.org/index2.html
"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be:
but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is.
And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure. 1 John 3:3.
The voice of the Holy Spirit speaks to us through the WORD of God. That voice takes precedence over any one else's voice.
The Bible (Scriptures, the WORD) is manna...a DAILY bread. (every day)
"If you abide in Me and My WORDS abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will and it shall be done unto you."
"Thy WORD is truth" John 17:17. Let it be our daily compass.
Now is the time for us to be living lives of rigorous honesty and integrity.
Hearing from God. Let us take time in the morning to hear God's voice. If we are patient enough , and wait upon the Lord, His still small voice will speak to us. We must have a willing heart to hear and then the resolve to obey.
Let us search the Scriptures for ourselves, instead of relying on another's interpretation.
Also, this might be a good time for us to purchase a Concordance, since that helps us to locate Scripture verses readily. Leaving a Concordance for those left behind is also a good idea.
We must watch to keep abreast of current events as they relate to Bible Prophecy. Let us keep our eyes on what's happening in the Mid-East...in Israel and especially in regards to JERUSALEM. May we watch the political maneuverings in the European Union.
Let us watch the military deployments of the West.
Then we are to fit the daily events into the prophecy pattern given in:
Matthew 10: 17-42 and Matthew 24 ... Mark 13 .... Luke 17 and Luke 21;
and of course the Old Testament prophets , especially the Book of Daniel , 1 and 2 Thessalonians, and
the Book of Revelation/Apocalypse.
Checking and rechecking Scripture daily helps to keep us accurate as we go for the whole picture, rather than isolated events. We can also WATCH current events by checking into websites that keep up with the latest developments. http://www.watch.org
If Bible passages are difficult to understand, then our Links 2 page has many websites that will help in this area. hopetotheend.com/linkspg2.html
AUDIO-Tapes can be listened to at supper time:
There are many more links listed at hopetotheend.com/linkspg1.html
and at hopetotheend.com/spiritual.html
When we dine on the Lord's word at meal time ( or any time) we are fulfilling the Scripture verse:
"Behold, I stand at the door and knock;
if any man hear My voice, and open the door,
I will come in to him and sup with him and he with Me". Rev. 3:20
This is "church" in the last days. "Wherever two or more are gathered together." Matthew 18: 19, 20.
A church (Assembly ) of one, plus Jesus .
Jesus Christ has promised the Laodicean Church , the Church right now, that He Himself will be that second Person with you. And we are to assemble--with Him alone, if need be---all the more as we see the day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25 .
That verse of Scripture, by the way, was written to Christians who were assembling exclusively in their own homes. There were no church buildings until the third century under Constantine.
"Watching unto Prayer" (1 Peter 4:7 )
means responding to the needs given within each day. Each time the news-casts come on TV, we ought to pray over the prophetic outcome of world events, and for the suffering people around the world.
"Watch thou in all things" 2 Timothy 4:5. We are to especially watch and listen for the phrase "Peace and Safety" (Security) ....for then sudden destruction shall come". 1 Thessalonians . 5:3....and we shall depart.
If the news is "too much to take" (so filled with violence), then you may want to get your news through a secondary source....where the demoralization is filtered out and the main points are contained.
Whatever news you choose, do stay abreast of the facts. The more one can align current events with Bible prophecy, the more one can give to every man an answer for the hope that lies within us. 1 Peter 3:15
"Let us watch and be sober" 1 Thessalonians. 5: 6
Being sober first of all implies that many are inebriate (drunk with wine, beer, hard liquor, drugs and over-medicated) in these last days. Since the Thessalonians letters are addressed to Christians, that means there are Christians over-indulging, or even indulging at all.
There are some among us that eat and drink with the drunken ( the deluded ) , and our Lord will come for such at an hour they think not, and appoint them their portion with the hypocrites. Matthew 24: 49-51
We are to mortify our flesh. Colossians 3:5
"make no provision for the flesh"...Romans 13:14
If there are food items that are compulsive for us, then we don't buy them. If they're on our shelf at home, it would be better to throw them out. Let's be honest with ourselves.
We CAN fast...if not totally from food for a day , then partially....from sweets, snacks, in-between meals etc....certain food items. That's just common-sense eating.
Maybe we could trade fast-foods for salads and vegetables instead.
Each time we practice Holy Ghost-discipline, we strengthen the inner man:
"But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway". 1 Corinthians 9:27
One can be drunk with excessive-anything:
"And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting (excess), and drunkenness and the cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares." Luke 21:34
We can eat and drink too much, talk too much, be idle too much, watch TV or surf the net too much, buy too much ( especially on credit and get into perilous debt ) ....we can do anything to excess. The Lord tells us here to put a lid on it. Don't let it overtake us. Best to mortify the flesh and abstain from all alcohol.
( See Jeremiah 35...."the Rekebites"). We ought to restrain from anything that is a stumblingblock.
"All things are lawful but not all things edify." 1 Corinthians 10:23
Being sober minded means not only abstaining from alcohol and drugs (over-medication), but it also means to have mental sobriety. Mental Sobriety is a state of mind always in readiness to receive promptings from the Holy Ghost. We need not be somber or grave, but we do need to touch-base within, connect with God regularly throughout the day, especially when things matter to us. We do not become so carried away with events, frivolities and trivialities that we lose our conscious contact with God.
We keep analyzing our priorities at all times.
Matthew Henry, the great spiritual writer, recounts an episode early in his childhood. He told his mother that he would like to grow up and become a preacher. He would preach the finest sermons ever, and tell people exactly what to do. They would HAVE TO live-out all the words of the Bible. They would HAVE TO live perfect lives of holiness!
To which his mother calmly replied, "And then my son, would you tell them how ?"
The Gospel contains WHO ;
Ezekiel 36:26 contains WHERE ;
Hebrew 4:7 contains WHEN;
Mark 12:33 contains WHAT......
and Romans Chapter 8 contains the HOW.
Our "HOW" is by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 8:14
"Not by might, nor by power but by My Spirit, saith the LORD of hosts."
"The things I don't want to do, I do. And the things that I do want to do , I don't.
O wretched man that I am, who will deliver me from this picky body of death?....Romans 7:15 (paraphrased)
Only our willingness to cooperate with the Holy Ghost will deliver us. Romans Chapter 8.
"Sweet Holy Spirit, rule over my soul."
The athletes competing in the Olympics, undergo strenuous exercises and rigorous diets. All for a perishable crown. How much more so should we prime ourselves for the spiritual race and incorruptible crowns ?
1 Corinthians 9:25
The prophet Daniel was 10 times wiser than his peers ..."the intellectual elite " of his day. He chose to eat smart, and to practice daily discipline. Daniel Chapter 1.
What does it mean to eat smart? It includes eating a majority of vegetables and proteins ( beans) . Eating less and less sweets and junk food (or none at all). And not snacking all day long.
4. Pray without ceasing...1 Thessalonians 5:17
Now--- more than ever--- we ought to pray for our family members, friends, immediate family, yourself...and for all main concerns.
"God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you" 1 Samuel 12: 23
Let us both pray in tongues and with our understanding. 1 Corinthians 14:15
Praying in Tongues http://hopetotheend.com/tongues.html
and pray with our understanding. On that daily commute, why not sing in tongues?
May we MAKE TIME for prayer. Let us have a prayer list and check it off each day.
Maybe we could give up some leisure time and just turn inward to thank and praise the Lord and bring our concerns to Him and plead for nations, peoples and news events.
If one really wants to do that, one will.
We are to pray for our enemies,. ( Matthew 5:44 )
"Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments,
despise our persons---but they are powerless against our prayers." J. Baxtor
And we need to pray for those who question our beliefs and come against us.
The cults, and also main-line compromised-denominations are on a membership-crusade. They will write us, visit us, mail us, and e-mail us with their false teachings. We are to entangle with no one. Instead, we simply close the door, effectively. 2 John 10
"Fire goes out for lack of fuel" Proverbs 26:20.
Also see 2 John 10 -- http://www.blueletter.org.
"If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house,
neither bid him God speed ( no hi's and no good-byes).
"Thou therefore my son be strong...endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life;
that he may please Him who hath chosen him to be a soldier." 2 Timothy 2:1-4
The twisters of truth are on the web, and also meandering on message boards.
We are to "Prove all things" 1 Thessalonians 5:21
Prayer takes nano-seconds, and reminds us of the spiritual dimension we live in...a dimension more real than the visible world, and far more eternal. Prayer is humbling because it reminds us that we are not in control,
nor should we contrive circumstances in order to be in control. Instead we go to the One in control , and let Him handle it. He is more than able "to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power (prompted by the Holy Spirit) that worketh in us." Ephesians 3:20
And also in these Last Days we must pray that our spirit stays ALIVE and responding to the needs of people, despite the demoralization perpetrated in the media and all around us. We must ever be alive to God's voice and His presence. Jesus is coming for those who are ALIVE in Christ. 1 Thessalonians 4:15.
Don't let the light, fervor and zeal go out.
Let us stay ardent and faithful, regardless of circumstances. 1 Corinthians 4:2
"Be not weary in well doing" 2 Thessalonians 3:13.
We are to "fight the good fight of faith" 1 Timothy 6:12
"I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting" 1 Timothy 2:8
In our home, we pray right during the news for healing of victims, justice for perpetrators, etc.
And also, every time we hear an ambulance or siren, we pray for the Salvation of that person's soul and for God to intervene miraculously. "Pray without ceasing." 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Here is the whole passage:
"Now we exhort you brethren, warn them that are unruly,
comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.
See that none render evil for evil unto any man;
but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.
Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing.
In everything give thanks:
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings.
Prove all things. Hold fast that which is good.
Abstain from all appearance of evil.
And the very God of Peace sanctify you wholly;
and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of Our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thessalonians 5: 14-23
Let us keep humble....
"Watch ye therefore and pray ALWAYS that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. Luke 21:36
The Rapture is not a guarantee....it is as the Lord wills.
Some Christians tout it as a declaration of spiritual Rights. Please see Matthew 22.
5. Repent of known sins (Ezekiel 18)....Fight the Good fight... 1 Timothy 6:12
Do Born-again Believers commit sins ? Yes.
The PROBLEM is the human heart. Jeremiah 17: 9.
"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"
The SOLUTION is repentance 1 John 1: 9, 10
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness"...
"If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us".
If we judge ourselves (now ), we should not be judged ( at the judgment seat of Christ in eternity ). 1 Corinthians 11:31
When we fail, (we ALL fail) we must pick ourselves up and begin again, and again, and again. We are to fall-forward ( as Greg Laurie says ), and press on.
Psalm 51 helps us to seek repentance. Psalm 32 reminds us of God's mercy and forgiveness, after we have confessed our sins.
The Lord searches the reins and hearts. He searches our priorities, and tests our motives.
Rev. 2:23 "I AM He which searcheth the reins and hearts "
Jeremiah 17:10..... "I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins".
We born-again Believers are all to appear before the judgment seat of Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:10
Bruce Scott: The Judgment Seat of Christ www.foigm.org/IMG/judgment.htm
Romans 14:10...The Judgement Seat of Christ
Romans 14:12--Then everyone of us shall give account of himself
Overheard at www.bible.org/docs/nt/books/rom/deffin2/rom2-16.htm ...
"A man consulted a doctor.
'I've been misbehaving, Doc, and my conscience is troubling me", he complained
"And you want something that will strengthen your will power ? " asked the doctor.
"Well no, said the fellow. I was thinking of something that would weaken my conscience."
Let us amend ( change ) our ways.... make greater efforts, try harder, with the grace of God..."resist the devil and he will flee from you ". James 4:7
We are to put on the whole armor of God. Ephesians 6
"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil...that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand." Ephesians 6:10-18
The passage goes on to tell us that we are to arm ourselves with
TRUTH ( rigorous HONESTY in the inward parts ),
RIGHTEOUSNESS, Continual Reconciliation (the Gospel of Peace),
and FAITH (Prayer and Trust).
We are to wear the helmet of hope of Salvation (our Blessed Hope) 1 Thessalonians 5:8
( No OSAS here ( "Once Saved Always Saved" ) No Blessed Assurance...only a helmet of Hope)
and the Word of God to keep us sound.
"Work out your own Salvation with fear and trembling". Philippians 2:12
With our armor on, we are to fight the good fight....1 Timothy 6:12
"Let the weak say I am strong."... Joel 3:10
We are to know in Whom we believe. 2 Timothy 1:12
" I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ,
for it is the power of God unto Salvation to everyone that believes" --Romans 1:16
We are to realize that the adversary, the devil, knows that his time is very short. Revelation 12:12.
He is doing all he can to upset us, to wear us down and to have us give up.
We must not quit. ....hopetotheend.com/dontQ.html
"Brethren, be sober and watch well. The devil who is your enemy goes about roaring like a lion, seeking whom he may devour.
But you, grounded in the faith, must face him boldly." 1 Peter 5: 8, 9
Let us stay connected to the Power Grid---Jesus Christ, through His Holy Spirit.
Let the WORD be our Generator.
Satan and his demons never let up.
There will be distractions, harassments, set backs, hardships, possibly a death or serious illness in the family, financial setbacks and possibly great financial losses.
We must "endure afflictions" 2 Timothy 4:5.
Time is short. We must bed-down with unlimited patience.
"Blessed are they which endure". James 5:11
WALK IN THE LIGHT
"But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps." Matthew 25:4
We know from Scripture that the "Day of the Lord" precedes the Great Tribulation, and that that day is a day of devastating darkness...a thick blackness that can be felt. Exodus 10:21
( See also Amos 5:18-20; Zephaniah 1:15)
Are we prepared to sustain ourselves during these hours of pitch-darkness, before the Rapture ?
Is Jesus Christ our LIGHT ?
Are we so totally secure in Him that the world can't fill us with its' insecurity ?
"God hath not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love, and of a sound mind" 2 Timothy 1:7
"Fear hath torment"; "A perfect love casts out fear"....1 John 4:18
We must walk in the light as He is in the Light. 1 John 1:7
Spiritual light is more than sufficient for the need. May we already be walking in that light even now.
"He that doeth truth, cometh to the Light" John 3: 21
Our Light is Jesus Christ; the oil is our Spirit-filled walk.
6. Witness. "be instant in season and out of season" 2 Timothy 4:2.
"Do the work of an evangelist" 2 Timothy 4:5 . Be approachable for people to ask you Godly questions.
Make the most of every opportunity. Be diligent. Hebrews 6:11
Yet we do not persist where our message is not being received.
We are then to shake the dust off of our feet. Matthew 10:14
The best sermon is example: 1 Peter 3:4
" Preach the Gospel at all times-- if necessary, use words."
7. Pay off our debts. "Owe no man anything but to love one another" ROMANS 13:8
"Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there remembereth that thy brother hath ought against thee: Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift."
Paying off our debts soothes the nerves and brings a good night's sleep.
If we stop buying beyond our means, the problem ceases to exist.
"But godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out,
and having food and raiment (clothing) let us be therewith content." 1 Timothy 6: 6-8
"Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors" ....from the Our Father
8. Getting our house in order is also literal. Now is the time to clean out our homes, drawers, closets, cars, anything.... from stem to stern----
share, give away, toss out...LET GO. Let go. Let go.
Whatever chores and projects must be done to simplify our lives, now is that time.
Let's keep it simple, no matter what it is. K.I.S.S. ....Keep It Simple Sojourner.
The less we have, the less we have to worry about and maintain.
Less is more.....more tranquility, inner peace and serenity.
Cleanliness IS next to Godliness. Dusting, sweeping, cleaning, scrubbing are all necessary to maintaining our well-being and hygiene. Tidiness puts a soothing atmosphere into the home, where love, serenity and inner peace can reign.
It lifts the spirit to see orderliness and neatness. We must never underestimate the
healing quality of a well kept home.
"Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit" Ecclesiastes 6:9
The inner rewards are worth it. We are better able to think, meditate, pray and read in an uncluttered place.
9. This is also the time for us to do that which we have not done...
turning omissions into commissions. May we not procrastinate or hesitate any longer.
Today, Visit, call or write those that have been put off until "tomorrow".
Tomorrow is always a day away.
May the Holy Spirit lead us and guide us. ( Discernment greatly needed in this area )
10. Let people notice our calm in the midst of the storm.
My peace is not of this world ....John 14:27
(peace) "the world didn't give it to me, and the world can't take it away." (Popular Song)
"We have the mind of Jesus Christ" ( 1 Corinthians 2:16 ) Let's put it on.
11. May we keep ourselves in the love of God, no matter what. Jude 21
"Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith" Hebrews 12:2
May we not let our ministry, witnessing or any other thing take priority over our quantity time with Our Lord. Too many have slipped into error and sin, mainly because one has left their first love. Many leaders have gotten their eyes on their ministry
(quotas, bucks and entertaining talents) instead of upon Jesus.
We can learn from other's mistakes. We don't have to repeat them.
The Lord is not interested in quantity. He is interested in quality. See Gideon's Army Judges Chapter 7
"But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the Gospel of the grace of God." Acts 20:24
12. APPLICATION --- FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD --- James 2:20
A lot of the above points many of us know already. It's APPLYING them that takes concerted effort...."lest I myself become a castaway" 1 Corinthians 9:27
If we ask the Holy Ghost to help us, He will.
"Ye have not because ye ask not" James 4:2
We are into the last lap now...the home-stretch. We need to set our faces like flint and endure the loneliness of the long distance runner.
We count them happy who endure to the end.
James 5:11; Matthew 24:13; Mark 4:17 and 13:13; 2 Tim 2:10
"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."
2 Tim. 4:7
In these closing days may we ardently seek time with the Lord. Let us zealously guard that time.
We must keep our confidence in Christ (Heb. 3:6 and 1 John 2:28),
and let no man take our crown from us. Rev. 3:11.
Let us seek God's face. Psalm 27:8. Let us picture the rapture. Let us sing, and make melody in our hearts.
May we comfort one another with the Blessed Hope of Our Lord's soon return.
Soon our faith will be sight. Soon He that is to come will come, and will not tarry
( Hebrews 10:37 ) Soon this earthly experience will be no more. Soon our worries, concerns and strivings will matter not at all. The only thing that will matter is:
how much did we love and praise the Lord Jesus with our lifestyle and with our words?
How often did we live the Golden Rule:
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you ?
Soon we will be changed from glory to glory. We will receive crowns. We will wear a robe of fine linen, OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS, our deeds, our works. Revelation 19:8 ( the FRUIT of our lives)
We must not come behind in any area that we can advance in. 1 Corinthians 1:7
Let's go for all the glory, in Christ Jesus.
Let us love the Lord our God with our whole heart, our whole soul our whole mind, our whole strength and with all our Understanding ,
and our neighbor as ourselves. Mark 12: 29, 30 + 33
He's coming soon. Real soon. Are we ready ?
Devotional: The New Life by Andrew Murray
Song: "We Shall Behold Him" written by Dottie Rambo
Ron Kenoly http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B9vZ2G22x1s
Also in Sign language for the deaf ; Dottie Rambo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDfwOL3IQ5I
Even so, Come Lord Jesus !
Face to Face with Christ My Savior
Links for The Bride of Christ
"As we await the return of the Lord, we must:
Stand on the Word,
Believe in God's power,
Rely on the Holy Spirit,
Practice tough faith,
Order our priorities,
Keep an eternal perspective,
Stand for righteousness,
Persist in prayer,
Surrender in worship,
Cling to hope,
And, live looking for Jesus."
posted by "Creeper" Rapture Ready ET MB
The Church: The Beautiful Bride of Christ by Tom Moore www.tisd.net/~plcofc/so-beautiful_bride_of_Christ.htm
Prepare by Maureen