Monday, January 28, 2013

Jesus is Returning One Day: You Can Take it to the Bank!

2 Peter 3:1-10: This is my second letter to you, dear friends, and in both of them I have tried to stimulate your wholesome thinking and refresh your memory. 2 I want you to remember what the holy prophets said long ago and what our Lord and Savior commanded through your apostles.

3 Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. 4 They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.”

5 They deliberately forget that God made the heavens by the word of his command, and he brought the earth out from the water and surrounded it with water. 6 Then he used the water to destroy the ancient world with a mighty flood. 7 And by the same word, the present heavens and earth have been stored up for fire. They are being kept for the day of judgment, when ungodly people will be destroyed.

8 But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. 9 The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. 10 But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.

"World Ends Tomorrow; Congress Approves Term Limits, and School Prayer."

I hope you enjoyed the little funny above, but one day it will not be as funny as many people think!

I mentioned during my sermon that many think the world that we are now living in is the only world there ever was or ever will be. These people are wrong twice. Here is why: 

1-The Bible gives much proof that the world before the flood of Noah's day was existent until God could not find many people that wanted to live for Him and He ended that world with a great flood.
You can do some great study of this world ending flood at:

2- The Bible gives a great promise of a new heaven and a new earth coming down out of heaven one day to make everything perfect, back to the way God had in mind to start with. This world will be for those that are believers and followers of His Son, Jesus Christ.
Revelation 21:1 "Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea."
So, the points that were made yesterday were why we can take it to the bank that Jesus Christ will come back one day to this world and make things right:

I. Because of the promise of the Scriptures (2 Peter 3:1-2)
II. Because of the Ignorance of the Scoffers (v. 3= scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires.)
III. Because of the PATIENCE of the Savior! (v. 9=The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.)

In closing: 
ILLUST: I heard the story of an atheist who stood before a congregation and said, "If there is a God, I dare him to strike me dead within sixty seconds." He then took his pocket watch in his hand and began to count off the seconds. Some people fainted. Others thought that surely within sixty seconds the man would be dead.
They were convinced that God would not put up with such foolishness. Well, when the allotted time was up, the atheist said, "You see, I told you there is no God." A sweet little Christian lady stood up in the back of that group and said, "You fool, you cannot exhaust the patience of an infinite God in sixty seconds."

God loves you and so do we!!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Jesus says: "Be Ready"

"These Last Days"-Be Ready!

Sunday was an amazing day at United! As your Pastor, I am blessed to be able to fellowship with you and to meet your friends, family and neighbors! As a matter of fact, many Pastor's in America very rarely see new faces such as we do. Let's keep inviting and encouraging others to join us on Sunday mornings.
Several made new commitments to Christ yesterday! 
Here us a summary of what we discussed on Sunday:


Matthew 24:36 “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.

37 “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. 38 In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. 39 People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes.

40 “Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left.

42 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.

3 Things to Do As you Wait for Jesus to Return:


I. FOCUS ON YOUR RELATIONSHIPS. 

1. Relationships are what life is all about.

What about using every opportunity to restore relationships that have been broken, strengthen relationships that have been weakened and make stronger relationships that are vital to our emotional and spiritual well-being.

ILLUST: Let me tell you about a family that went on a week of vacation. They left their dog in a Pet Hotel. When they returned, they picked up their pet and took her home. However, almost immediately they noticed something quite disturbing. When they would stroke her large clumps of her hair fell out. Shocked, they called the vet who said that the small animal was stressed by the absence of human contact. If they would spend two hours with her, he said, the hair would stick again. Sure enough it worked. 

*Relationships are UNDERRATED! 
*Someone in your life could have better emotions and better health if relationships were in order

II.     FOCUS ON YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES

Your own soul (Are you feeding your soul with the Word, Prayer, Worship?)
Your family-your spouse (is anyone else getting more quality attention?)
Your neighbors, co-workers, etc (do they see Christ in you?)

III. FINALLY, TO PREPARE YOURSELF COMPLETELY, FOCUS ON THE REDEEMER.

MICAH 6:8---No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you:
to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.

HAS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD EVER BEEN BETTER THAN IT IS NOW?

ILLUST: A church in a small Swiss town was renowned for its beautiful pipe organ. The music from that organ was so moving, so resonant, so rich that those who heard it swore that they could see visions of God. Worshipers left that church each Sunday inspired to live lives that reflected the glory and reverence of God, because the awesome music of the pipe organ drew their hearts closer to their Creator.
But over time, the organ pipes began to lose their rich sound. The music became thin and mediocre. The church’s pastor brought in repairmen from all over Switzerland to examine the organ. None of them knew how to restore its wonderful sound.
One night, a shabby-looking stranger entered the town. He went to the church and asked the caretaker to be allowed to stay the night. The caretaker was suspicious of the stranger, but the caretaker’s young daughter was moved by the glow of the stranger’s eyes. She convinced her father to let him in.
Later, the caretaker awakened to hear the church sanctuary filled with music. The music was not thin and ordinary. It was the rich, resonant, soaring tones that once filled the hearts of the worshipers. He ran to the sanctuary, where he saw the townspeople assembled. They sat in reverent awe, praising God for the beauty they experienced. At the organ sat the shabby stranger.
When the music stopped, the caretaker asked the stranger, “Who are you?”
“My name is Gott,” the stranger replied.
“But who are you that you could restore the beautiful music of the organ?”
The stranger smiled and wiped some dust from the mantle of the organ. Underneath in gilt letters was the name “Gott.”
“Many years ago, I built this organ with my own hands,” he explained. “Now, I have come, to make it sing again.” 

ARE YOU STILL SINGING? 

God loves you just the way you are but loves you too much to leave you that way!


Monday, January 14, 2013

The Last Days=Many Earthquakes in Diverse Places

Good Monday morning everyone! I know that we were truly blessed yesterday by the Southern Wesleyan Singers and by the fellowship of others that love the Lord. 
We always look forward to this gifted group of musicians to come to United and yesterday they were at their best.

We continue our sermon series on "The Last Days" and what Jesus said about how Earthquakes will play a big part of the end times. 
Jesus predicted many earthquakes for the last days as a sign of His second coming (Matthew 24:7; Mark 13:8; Luke 21:11).  Several are mentioned in Biblical history (Amos 1:1; Zech. 14:5; Matthew 8:24; Matthew 27:51; Matthew 28:2; Acts 16:25).  The greatest earthquake of all will take place at the end of the Millennium (Haggai 2:6-7,21-22; Hebrews 12:25-29; 2 Peter 3:10-13; Rev. 20:11).  This will result in the renovation of the heavens and earth, making the third perfect earth, and the end of the earth's second sinful career (Rev. 21-22; Isaiah 66:22-24).

I did mention that as of 5:15 AM Sunday morning there has already been 14 earthquakes around the world ranging from 3.1-5.8 on the Richter Scale. If you want to keep up on daily earthquakes around the world, here is a link:  http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/

My main focus on Sunday was to give a plan to be ready for, not an earthquake, but for Jesus to return to the world to claim His church. 
Here is the plan:
1. Realize that you are a sinner and you need a Savior
2. Repent (turn away from) your sin and be determined to change
3. Receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior!

If you follow this path, you will experience a new life that consist of:
  • NO FEAR of dying and leaving this world
  • NO SECOND DEATH or The Great White Throne Judgment
A Christian believer is "Born twice and dies once-an unbeliever in born once and dies twice."

Here is an illustration that brings this all into a simple summary when it comes to being prepared for the coming of Jesus Christ to this world:

The Titanic set sail from England to America. They said the Titanic was an unsinkable ship, and really, that was the only thing it ever did. It made its way into treacherous waters. Its captain was told there were dangerous icebergs along the way and that he should be careful. He read the note, folded it, put it away, and said: “Sail on.” They sailed on and you know the story. They hit an iceberg and over 1,500 people died that night as a result.

There were people in the first, second and third class sections of that ship. Some were up and outers while others were down and outers. Some were very poor while others were very rich. There were people on board from all facets of society and many countries of the world. But, when the news arrived in New York that the Titanic had sunk, there were not longer many classes of people listed, only the saved and the lost. 

Today, there are still only two classes of two people in the world: those who are saved and those who are lost. When Jesus returns, those who are lost will be left behind. Those who are saved will be caught up with Him into Glory. The only way the lost can be saved is for you and me to go to the valley and get their dirt and blood on our clothes and take them to the mountain.

See you next Sunday at United!

Monday, January 7, 2013

The Last Days
2 Timothy 3:1-6 
You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. 2 For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. 3 They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. 4 They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. 5 They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!


“Evil prevails when good people do nothing”

Wow! What a quote and what a truth. Most of us that are reading this today know the truth. However, the big question is what are we doing with the truth? Are we just keeping it to ourselves and sailing on to heaven alone and letting others fall off the moral cliff?

It does not take a rocket scientist to realize that we are going backward in our morals in our world, particularly in our country. It also is very obvious that church attendance has gone to new lows in our country since the 1990’s.
These two things are playing right into what the Bible says will happen in “these last days.” When we hear morals sinking low or church attendance going lower, we need not say something is wrong, we need to say that the Word of God is right concerning the time in which we live!

I was amazed that throughout the day on Sunday, many that were in attendance made contact with me and indicated that "The Last Days" sermon was a topic that they were extremely interested in learning more about. It certainly is a timely subject to say the least.

The one thing that I have heard the most feedback about was this: I mentioned that many that are trying to "disprove" God or find a reason "not to believe in God" normally say things such as: "Well, these things have been in the bible for generations, for over 2000 years and nothing has happened yet."...I mentioned in the sermon that we have a different time frame and a different way of looking at the calendar years than God has. The Bible says in 2 Peter 3:8 that "1000 years is as a day to God" so when these things were written in the Bible, it was like 2 days ago to God!

Here is an article that you may want to take some time to look at:

Please remember that we live in a time that information is all over the board concerning the end times. When you read and study an article like that, remember that I may have a little different slant or opinion on a topic, but I trust the author and the information they are giving.

So, my take on the last days is this: "Live like today is the last day but plan to live another 1000 years."


Please feel free to openly give feedback and discuss this topic with me. 
God bless you all today! You are in my prayers and I am looking forward to next Sunday as we continue this discussion.

Pastor Tim