The Master‘s Class, LifeChange Church Wichita
A TOUR OF HEAVEN (Revelation 21:1-8)

A TOUR OF HEAVEN (Revelation 21:1-8)

June 3, 2018

Let me ask you a question here, have you ever been made fun of for believing in such things as heaven and hell? In the really old days, when I was much younger, people would call those of us who believed in a life hereafter, Holy Rollers or Religious nuts. Both were used derisively to describe someone who is overcome with too much Holy Spirit and has lost touch with reality. Today, that is fairly mild compared to the hateful names they call anyone who dares to say that Jesus Christ is Lord, and that heaven is real, and therefore, hell is real. I certainly have gotten used to the tolerant looks from people, when they hear I am teaching through the book of Revelation.

When we as Christians talk about heaven, there are those people who just sneer and say, "Well, you Christians are so heavenly minded you are no earthly good." May I suggest that it is just the opposite? Many of us are so earthly minded we are no good to heaven or earth.

Col 3:1-2
1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
KJV

The Bible tells us that we are to be heavenly minded. What did Jesus tell us in Matthew 6:20-21?

Matt 6:20-21
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
KJV

If your heart is not in heaven, if you are not anticipating going to heaven, then it is because your treasure is down here. And to be honest, it is not your treasure that God wants. God doesn't need anything. It is your heart that God wants. So, where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. By the way, if you want to know how rich you really are, you add up everything you have that money can't buy and that death can't take away. That is the treasure that you will have in heaven.

The Lord wanted John to write about heaven as He closed out this wonderful book of Revelation. I believe He did so because He wanted us to know about the place that He has gone to prepare for us, so that we could be confident in our future.

Click on the link below to hear a message on the reality of a place called heaven. Heaven is a real place that we are going to spend eternity in.

Amen.

JUDGMENT DAY (Revelation 20:13-15)

JUDGMENT DAY (Revelation 20:13-15)

May 27, 2018

As we think about this final judgment of the unsaved dead, I sometimes wonder what those who read my posts, or listen to the podcast think. Do they ask themselves, “Is this real? Is a judgment day when I will stand before God real, or is it just something religious nuts talk about to make people scared enough to come to church? It just seems so theatrical, like the stuff of fairy tales, or an Edgar Allen Poe story, to talk about heaven and hell, fire and brimstone, and eternity. It is simple, you live, you die, you are buried, and that is it. Party while you can, because life is short.”

I want you to listen to me, with every single fiber of my body, I want to tell you that this judgment day is real. Every single person who has ever lived is destined to meet Jesus Christ. You will meet Him as your Savior, or as your Judge. You get to choose, but you must choose now, before you die, before your heart stops beating. Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation, now is the time to choose Jesus Christ to be your Savior and Lord. You do not want to stand before Christ at this final judgment, for everyone who does, everyone, will be condemned to spend eternity in the lake of fire. Forever, and ever. It is as simple as that.

The Bible tells us over and over again that there is a judgment day coming. There is coming a time when God will put the final period, upon the final paragraph, upon the final page, upon the final chapter, upon the final book of human history. This judgement will include every person who has ever lived that rejected God’s free gift of salvation. If during your life on this earth, you said no to the gospel message of Jesus Christ, then you will stand before Christ to be judged and condemned to an eternity in hell. The key to who will stand at this judgment is not how bad you were, or how good you were. It is whether or not you made Jesus Christ your Savior and Lord while you lived on this earth. That’s it, that is the determining factor and to which judgment you will go to, and where you will spend eternity.

For all those who have said that they don’t believe in hell fire, 30 seconds after you get there, you will believe. This is what God’s Word says, and it is as sure as the God that wrote each word. There really is a lake of liquid fire, and the sadness of it is, that you don't have to go. C. S. Lewis brilliantly said that everybody in the world is in two categories. Those who are like Satan who say to God the Father, “not your will but mine be done.” And those who are like God the Son who say to the Father, “not my will but thine be done.”

Now those in the first category who say to the Father, not your will but mine be done, who are autonomous and live self-concerned, self-controlled lives, will one day drop into that Lake of Fire and a broken-hearted God will say, "Not my will, but thine be done." God doesn't want you to go to hell.

The truth is, that if you die outside the Lord, then you are going to come to a judgment and you will find out for yourself that the Bible is indeed true.

But I have got wonderful news for you. The Bible says of the Lord Jesus Christ, “He that believeth on him is not condemned. Now there is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus.”

Click on the link below to hear a message on the final day of judgment.

Amen.

THE FINAL JUDGMENT (Revelation 20:11-13)

THE FINAL JUDGMENT (Revelation 20:11-13)

May 20, 2018

The simple truth is that we live in a world full of evil. Evil lives in the heart of man. Evil doesn’t care who it harms, it just wants to harm someone or something. When a young man takes a gun to school and kills other students, that is evil living in the heart of that young man. I don’t care what you believe you are a victim of, there is no rational reason for killing others. It is just plain evil. No law can change the evil that lives in our hearts. Creating a perfect environment to live in cannot change the evil that lives in our hearts. You can make the world a Garden of Eden, and evil will still bubble up out of the heart of man.

There is only one way to change the heart of man, and that is the precious blood of Jesus Christ. Yet, this world rejects the free gift of salvation, and being given a new, godly, nature that the gospel of Christ offers to a lost world. So, evil grows and grows. The world gets darker and darker with sin. It seems that there is no answer to the problem. It seems that evil will eventually win and shut out the light of all that is good.

As believers in Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord, we know that the answer is not to be found in man, but in the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. When Jesus comes again, He will deal with evil of every kind. He will deal with Satan and all of his followers, and He will deal with the evil that resides in the heart of man. A day of judgment is coming, when Christ will deal with the evil of this world, forever.

Today’s message is about that final judgment of the unsaved dead. It is called the Great White Throne Judgment. Satan has persuaded mankind for centuries that there is no future punishment, no final accounting before God. It is a lie that has allowed evil to grow. The Bible tells us over and over again that there is a judgment day coming. There is coming a time when God will put the final period upon the final paragraph, upon the final page, upon the final chapter, upon the final book of human history. This judgement will include every person who has ever lived that rejected God’s free gift of salvation. If during your life on this earth, you said no to the gospel message of Jesus Christ, then you will stand before Christ as your judge at this final judgment.

The time of this final judgment will come and every scheme, every plan, every desire, that men sold their souls for, will turn to rust, and dust, and mold, and corruption. The unsaved dead will be raised from their graves to stand before the Lord Jesus Christ to be judged.

You may make the choice not to be a Christian. You may choose to never give your heart to Jesus Christ, but one day you are going to meet Jesus Christ. Every person who has ever lived has an appointment already set on the calendar to meet Jesus Christ. He is inescapable, and He is unavoidable. You will meet Jesus Christ. If you don't meet Him as Savior, then you will meet Him as Judge. You may have ignored Him, you may have denied Him, you may have disbelieved Him, you may even have cursed Him, but one day you will stand before the Lord Jesus Christ.

Click on the link below to hear a message on the Final Judgment.

Amen.

RESURRECTION AND REBELLION (Revelation 20:5-10)

RESURRECTION AND REBELLION (Revelation 20:5-10)

May 13, 2018

The title of our message today is Resurrection and Rebellion. In the first part of our message we will talk about the order of the resurrections of the just and unjust. Contrary to what many will tell you, the Bible does not teach of a single resurrection. Instead, it teaches of two resurrections. The first resurrection is for those saints who have Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. The second resurrection is for those who have rejected Christ as their Savior. Instead of joining Christ in heaven for eternity as the saints will do, these who have rejected Christ, will now stand before Christ as their Judge.

The second part of today’s message is about God’s plan to bring a final resolution to sin on this earth. Jesus Christ is going to come and rule for a thousand years. This will be a literal period of one thousand years when man will live in a perfect society. The animal kingdom will be changed, the mineral kingdom will be changed, and the earth will become a regenerated Garden of Eden. Men will live for a thousand years, they will be but youngsters at the age of 100 years old. Satan will be removed from the scene and cast into the bottomless pit, where he will remain chained until the very end of this one thousand year period, when God will let him loose for a little while.

The people of the earth will have been living in blessing for a thousand years. They will have children during the millennium. The population of the world will grow again. Even though they are living with the Son of God right before them, in blessings, in peace, many of them will reject Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. Jesus will rule the nations with a rod of iron. There will be no uprising during that time. There will be no Satan leading in rebellion. But down in the human heart, latent in the human heart, there will still be sin if it has not been washed by the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is these children, who, after a thousand years, are going to rebel against God when Satan is let loose. God is demonstrating to the world two great principles when He does this.

Number one: Punishment is not the final answer. Satan has been in the prison house doing hard time for one thousand years and he comes back to rebel one more time. Even a thousand years of punishment did not reform Satan. Punishment is not the answer to reform the heart of man.

Number two: Environment is not the final answer. Make your environment as good as you can, but after one thousand years of peace and righteousness down in the human heart this latent sin comes bubbling up. That is the way it is with sin in the human heart. There is only one answer to sin and it is the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

God will deal with this rebellion and He will deal with Satan, bringing a final resolution to sin. Sin will be no more.

Click on the link below to hear a message on the order of the resurrections and how God deals with rebellion against Jesus Christ.

Amen.

BRIDEGROOM AND KING (Revelation 19:9-16)

BRIDEGROOM AND KING (Revelation 19:9-16)

April 8, 2018

The Marriage of The Lamb and The Second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. Both are very important events in the life and faith of the person who has accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Our knowledge of these events should shape how we live our lives today, how we view the world, and how we view our place in this world. This world is not our home, we are but sojourners with tasks to complete in order to hasten the day of the coming of our Lord. As a believer you are still on this earth for a purpose, and that is to bring others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. You may not be the evangelist, but you are the seed planter, or the caretaker of the field, or the reaper of the harvest. You are the witness, the friend, the stranger, the co-worker, or the next-door neighbor, of someone who does not have a personal relationship with the Lord. You have a role to play in that person coming to Christ.

We have learned a great deal about the events that are going to occur with the Rapture of the church, and the horrible judgments that will occur during the Tribulation Period. We know that time is very short, and we know the eternal destinies of those around us are at stake. Christ has commissioned us to share the gospel message of Jesus Christ.

Click on the link below to hear a message on Jesus Christ as the Bridegroom and the King. As the Bridegroom He is coming for His bride, and as the King is coming with His bride. The world needs to know these truths.

Amen.

THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RESURRECTION

THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RESURRECTION

April 1, 2018

Today, we are going to talk about why the resurrection of our Lord Jesus is so important to our faith. The simple truth is that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins, and then on the third day, He rose bodily, physically, from the grave so that we might have everlasting life. We stand on a foundation; that foundation is the Rock, and the Rock is Christ. He came back from the dead, and Christianity rises and falls on that Rock.

It is a result of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ that all of the great doctrines of the New Testament faith ring out like a church bell with truthfulness to a lost world.

Not just forgiveness, but justification.

Not just redemption, but regeneration.

Not just remission of sin, but adoption into the family of God.

We are God’s children. We are joint heirs with Christ.

This is the importance of the Resurrection of Christ. It is an undeniable and indisputable fact in history. Everything hinges on the Resurrection. Do not insult my intelligence by saying that I believe this just because I wish it were so. I would not dedicate my life to the service of a man in a grave, and if you are in a religion where the founder of your religion is still in the grave, then your hope rests in that grave. It rests in a body that has turned to dust.

My faith rests in a risen Christ. My faith rests in a living Christ, therefore, my hope is a certain hope of eternal life with Him. Christianity is not just a creed, a code, a cause, or a church. It is a vital relationship with Jesus Christ. He alone has the words of eternal life. In Him dwells all the fullness and the wisdom of God. Only Jesus can meet the deepest desires of the human heart. Only Jesus is worthy of our faith, and it is in Jesus whom my faith rests.

Click on the link below to hear a message on why the resurrection of Jesus Christ is so important to the Christian faith. If you want to know who Jesus Christ is, ask the Holy Spirit. God doesn’t just say you must believe, but if you can’t believe that is just your hard luck. God says if you want to believe, He will help you understand and know that these things are true. If you want to know the truth about Jesus Christ, God the Holy Spirit will speak to you and confirm to you that Jesus is the risen Christ, the Son of the Living God.

THE CHOICE THAT DETERMINES YOUR DESTINY (Revelation 14:4-13)

THE CHOICE THAT DETERMINES YOUR DESTINY (Revelation 14:4-13)

January 21, 2018

Chapter 14 of the Book of Revelation is a chapter of contrasts. It contrasts the Lamb and the beast, earth and heaven, and the harvest of the doomed and the harvest of the saved. It contrasts the decisions that determine a person’s eternal destiny. It also contrasts those who follow the Lamb, and those who are bossed by the beast. It is this contrast that we are studying today, and it is from understanding the characteristics of both of these groups that we can learn a great deal from to apply to our lives today. The truth is that while this chapter discusses events in the Tribulation Period, the choice that is described here, is the same choice that man has been faced with since Creation. We must choose to follow Christ, or, willingly or not, we choose to follow Satan, and it is that choice which determines our eternal destiny.

When you die, you are either going to die in the Lord, or out of the Lord. So, the question is, if you died today, would you die in the Lord, or would you die out of the Lord? If you die in the Lord, of course, God says, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord. On the other hand, if you die outside of the Lord Jesus Christ, what a curse, what a sorrow, what a tragedy it would be for you. Another question to consider is, if you were to die today, where would you be? In other words, if you get to where you are headed, where will you be? Five minutes from now you may be in heaven, or you may be in hell. These are the questions that we will be asking today as we study the decisions of the living and the destiny of the dead.

Click on the link below to hear a message on the choice that will determine your eternal destiny. Is it Heaven or Hell? We will answer the question of whether Hell is real, or is it symbolic? How long will you stay in Hell? We will also discuss what your loved ones are doing in heaven today.

Amen.

THE CHARACTER OF THE 144,000 (Revelation 14:1-4)

THE CHARACTER OF THE 144,000 (Revelation 14:1-4)

January 14, 2018

I’ll bet this will come as a surprise to you, but, it is a Biblical truth that one day you are going to die. One day I am going to die.

Heb 9:27
27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
KJV

The only intervening factor that might keep us from dying, is the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. And before we die, there is a choice to be made. So, today is the time of decision in your heart. God made you a living soul. Your soul will be in existence somewhere when the sun, the moon, and the stars have all grown cold. There was a time when you were not. But, there never will be a time when you will not be. Now, the question is where will you spend eternity?

Rev 14:13
13 And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.
KJV

When you die, either you are going to die in the Lord, or out of the Lord. So, the question is, if you died today, would you die in the Lord, or would you die out of the Lord? If you die in the Lord, of course, God says, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord. On the other hand, if you die outside of the Lord Jesus Christ, what a curse, what a sorrow, what a tragedy it would be for you.

So, another question to consider is, if you were to die today, where would you be? In other words, if you get to where you are headed, where will you be? Five minutes from now you may be in heaven, or you may be in hell. These are the decisions of the living and the destiny of the dead.

Click on the link below to hear a message on the character of those have chosen to follow the Lord Jesus Christ. If you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, and have made Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior, then you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit. You wear the seal of possession, protection, and preservation, of the almighty God. You are the possession of God, and you can never lose your salvation. Nowhere in the Bible will you ever find where a person who was truly saved ever loses his or her salvation. Why? Because they are sealed by the Spirit. And what God has sealed, the Kings' seal can no man break.

Join in and listen to this message about the character of the 144,000 saints who witnessed for God during the Tribulation period, and how God preserved them all, not losing a single one.

Amen.

DEALING WITH PERSECUTION (Revelation 11:5-13)

DEALING WITH PERSECUTION (Revelation 11:5-13)

November 12, 2017

The Bible says that all who will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. If you live for Jesus, and your life is in obedience to the will of God, it is fruitful for God, and you are sharing the light of the gospel to a dark world, then the Bible says that you will suffer persecution.

To know that this is true, all you have to do is read the headlines of the news today. Christians are suffering severe persecution in countries all around the world. So, the question that we will look at today is, How do you deal with this persecution? What are the Biblical truths that we must apply to our lives, if we are to be successful in dealing with persecution on both a physical and spiritual level?

Click on the link below to learn the five factors that the Bible tells us in the book of Revelation about the two witnesses for God, and how they dealt with persecution. These are important lessons that we must settle in our hearts and mind if we are to be victorious in our witness for God.

Amen.

JESUS IS WORTHY OF MY WORSHIP (Revelation 5:6-14)

JESUS IS WORTHY OF MY WORSHIP (Revelation 5:6-14)

July 23, 2017

God has placed into the hands of men the decision as to whether or not they will accept Christ as Savior, but the decision as to whether or not they will acknowledge Him as Lord is not theirs to decide. The supreme tragedy of a lost eternity will be to know that there, shut out from the glory of heaven, sentenced to spend eternity in the burning fires of hell, all those who rejected Him as Savior, will still have to acknowledge that Jesus is Lord.

He will be praised at the center of heaven by the sinless sons of light and by the redeemed of all ages with joy unspeakable and full of glory. And He will be praised from the depths of the lake of fire by every damned and outcast soul with sobs and tears and choking cries.

Isa 45:23
23 I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.
KJV

Click the link to hear a sermon on how Jesus Christ is exclusively worthy of our worship. There is none other. He is exceedingly worthy because of Calvary, because of creation, and because of conquest. He is eternally worthy forever and ever.

JESUS IS EXCLUSIVELY WORTHY (Revelation 5:1-5)

JESUS IS EXCLUSIVELY WORTHY (Revelation 5:1-5)

July 16, 2017

Let me begin this post with a few personal questions.

1) Do you have a cause worth living for?

2) Is what you are living for, worthy of Jesus’ dying for?

3) When you get where you are headed, where will you be?

When you put our short, mortal, lives in the context of eternity, many of us are shoveling smoke and plowing water. When this world is done, much of what we have done will make no difference whatsoever. Think about it, how much of what we have worked so hard for in this life, will extend beyond the grave, or will even exist after Jesus Christ destroys this world and creates a new heaven and a new earth?

Years ago, Reader’s Digest had an article that said in order for a person to have a meaningful life, they need three things. First, they need someone to love. Second, they need something to do. Third, they need something to hope for. I think Reader’s Digest is right, but they did not say who or what that something was. That something is Jesus Christ. He is the One we love, the One we serve, and One in whom we hope. Jesus Christ is the only One worthy of my love, my life, my all, and yours.

The fifth chapter of Revelation talks about the One who is worthy, Jesus Christ. And it brings home the fact that each of us will never have satisfaction and fulfillment, or understand why God created us, until we come to worship Him.

Click on this link to hear a sermon on just one of three things that this chapter says about why our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, is worthy of our worship.

WHO IS THE RAPTURE FOR? (Revelation 4:2-4)

WHO IS THE RAPTURE FOR? (Revelation 4:2-4)

July 2, 2017

Certainly, the word rapture is full of meaning for Christians today. The single event that declares the church age has come to an end, is the rapture of the church. The church is defined as all those who accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior during the church age, or that time from Pentecost until the rapture occurs. The rapture is that event when, at the midnight cry, Jesus will come for His own. But the question that many ask is who is in that select multitude that will be taken up in the rapture?

Our churches are filled with those who look religious, act religious, pray religious, and even teach and preach religious, but they are lost. As you look across the worship service, there are those who know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and there are those who only say they do. As we look at the whole crowd, they all look the same, but if we had the eyes of Christ, we could look into every heart and see a completely different picture.

And that is what separates the saved from the lost, those who are ready for Jesus Christ to come, and those who are not. At the rapture, the person sitting next to you at the dinner table will go and you will remain. Or you may go and that person will remain. Two will be sitting in church. One will be taken and the other left. There is a select multitude, and the deciding factor in whether you will go or not, is whether you have been twice born as a new creation in Christ. Only the saved will be going. If you want to be one of these select multitude, then make Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior today, and then you can know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you will be caught up to meet Jesus in the air.

Click on the link below to hear a sermon on who the Lord is coming to get at the time of the rapture. Listen to what the Word of God says about who the rapture is for. Amen.

WHAT IS THE RAPTURE (Revelation 4:1-3)

WHAT IS THE RAPTURE (Revelation 4:1-3)

June 25, 2017

If I were to ask you to describe the rapture in two words or less, how would you respond?

For me, it would be heaven-bound. At last, I am heaven-bound. That is what the rapture means to me.

The single event that declares the church age has come to an end, is the rapture of the church. The church is defined as all those who accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior during the church age, or that time from Pentecost until the rapture occurs. The rapture is that event when, at the midnight cry, Jesus will come for His own.

Those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior, and are still living, will be miraculously transformed with glorified bodies and caught up, or raptured, into the air to meet the Lord. Those whose bodies sleep in the earth will be raised from their sleeping place to meet their heavenly spirits that are coming down with the Lord, and they will be joined together in the air. Each New Testament believer, dead or alive, will rise up to meet the Lord in the air. This is the event that is called the rapture.

The Bible calls this the blessed hope. And you need to be ready, but you don’t have to be fearful, about the coming of the Lord to catch us up in the rapture. Remember that sorrow looks backward, worry looks all around us, but hope looks upward. We are on a collision course with destiny, and we cannot afford to be ignorant.

Click on the link below to hear a sermon on what the rapture is and when it will occur. Jesus is coming again, the question is, are you ready? Amen.

A ROAD MAP OF THE END TIMES (Revelation 1:19)

A ROAD MAP OF THE END TIMES (Revelation 1:19)

April 9, 2017

Many people ask if there is a key to understanding the Book of Revelation? The answer is yes! God’s purpose is not to conceal, but to reveal. This golden key is hanging right on the front door in verse 19 of the first chapter of Revelation. It is John’s commission to write the Book of Revelation. In fact, John got his commission from the Trinity Book Publishing company. Jesus Christ, one of the three partners in the Trinity Book Publishing company, tells John,

Rev 1:19
19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;
KJV

Now, contrary to what some will tell you, the Book of Revelation is primarily a prophetic book. It tells us about the things which shall be hereafter, it is not a history book. Revelation is a book of prophecy, and only God knows the future. God alone can prophecy what will occur in the future. Satan cannot prophecy at all.

Today, I want to give us a panoramic view of the prophecy we find in this book so we can use it as a guide to what we are seeing in these prophecies. I am not going to go into them deeply, because we will be doing that over the next several months, years, or however long it takes us to get through this wonderful book of prophecy. But I do want you to have a roadmap to work from in our study.

Click the link to hear a podcast on the major branches of prophecy that will occur in the future. Jesus Christ is coming to judge the world, and God wants you to know what is going to happen so you can be ready.

ARE YOU LOOKING FOR HIS COMING? (2 Peter 3:10-12)

ARE YOU LOOKING FOR HIS COMING? (2 Peter 3:10-12)

February 14, 2017

The world is going to pieces.  It is falling apart all around us. But Peter says, that what is happening today should not be what the believer is looking for and working toward. Our focus should be on completing our mission of sharing the gospel to a lost world, but our hearts should be looking for the Second Coming of our Lord and the new heavens and the new earth that He is going to create.

Jesus Christ is coming again, and those who have rejected Him will spend eternity in the fires of Hell. I can’t say it any plainer than that. If you reject Christ as your Savior, then you will spend eternity in Hell. Not only is Jesus coming again to judge the wicked, but He is going to destroy the current heavens and the earth by fire and create a new heaven and a new earth. This new heaven and new earth, and our home on it, is what we are to be looking for. Let me tell you, the world is indeed getting ready to come apart.

Someone once told Mark Twain that they were afraid the world was going to end, and he said, “Don’t worry about it, we can do without it.” We can, and we will, do without this corrupt world, but we will have a new heaven and a new earth to live on. In our lesson today, Peter is going to tell us that since we know that all of these things are true, there should be changes in the way we live today. There should be an urgency to our mission. There should be a desire to live a life that is pleasing to God. There should be a fire burning within each believer to do everything they can to hasten the coming of the Lord. Somewhere out there is the last soul that the Lord is waiting on to be saved. If we truly want the Lord to come, then we need to be working hard to accomplish the tasks that we have been given. We should be sharing the gospel message to the lost souls that Jesus Christ has said He is waiting on, so that none should perish.

We are the tools that God uses to bring those souls to Him. We pray for His guidance on where those souls are, and which ones we are to evangelize to, and then we labor to bring them in. In doing so, we hasten the day of His coming.

Listen to this podcast to learn what we should be doing to hasten the coming of our Lord. We will answer the questions, What role are you playing in the purposes of God? Are you really looking for that day, and working toward it? If not, Peter says, get ready, be looking, and be working for the coming of the day of our God.

JUDGMENT IS COMING (2 Peter 3:7-9)

JUDGMENT IS COMING (2 Peter 3:7-9)

February 6, 2017

Jesus Christ is coming again, and when He arrives the time of judgment will begin. The Great White Throne of Judgment will deal with all who have rejected Christ. Satan and all of his antichrists, false prophets, apostates, demons, fallen angels, and followers, will be cast into the lake of fire. A new heaven and a new earth will be created, and Christ will reign in power for all of eternity. This is the promise that the Bible has given us as believers. The whole purpose of the Gospel message of Christ is so that man can avoid this judgment and live with Christ in the new heavens and on the new earth for eternity. God’s plan of salvation for the corrupted human race has been planned by a loving God from the foundation of the world.

Rev 13:8
8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
KJV

God knew that we would reject Him and His Son, but He loved us anyway.

1 John 4:19
19 We love him, because he first loved us
KJV

God loved us so much that He sent His Son to die on the cross for the sins of the world.

John 3:16-21
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
KJV

Christ has done all of the work of salvation for us, all we have to do to have everlasting life with Christ is accept His free gift of redemption. Yet, there are those who still reject this gift. They deny these truths, and they claim that Jesus Christ was not the Son of God. He was a good man, a teacher, and a prophet, but He was not the Son of God. The apostate rejects Christ, and claims that he cannot find Christ. They shout, where is He?

The apostate cannot find Christ for the same reason that a thief cannot find a policeman. Because he doesn’t want to find Him.

The only hope of the salvation of any soul rests in the patience, longsuffering, and self-control of God. God is long–suffering; He is patient; He is not rushing things. After all, He has eternity behind Him and eternity ahead of Him. But this almighty, merciful, and patient, God has promised that the final judgment, the dissolution of the earth and the heavens, is coming. God cannot lie. The day of judgment is coming.

In the meantime, He is giving men everywhere a further opportunity to repent and accept His gift of grace. This is the reason you and I need to get the Word of God out. It is the only thing that can change hearts and lives. It is by the Word of God that man is born again:

1 Peter 1:23
23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
KJV

It is not God’s will that you should perish. God does not want you to come into judgment; He wants you to pass from death unto life. And you can do that—you can turn to Him and receive the wonderful salvation that He has for you.

Did you know that you cannot keep God from loving you? You can reject His love, but you cannot keep Him from loving you. Neither can you keep it from raining, but you can raise an umbrella to keep the rain from falling on you. Also, you can raise the umbrella of indifference, or the umbrella of sin, or the umbrella of rebellion, so that you won’t experience God’s love, but you cannot keep Him from loving you.

My friend, you can slap God in the face; you can turn your back on Him; you can blaspheme Him, and you can shake your fist in defiance at Him, but you cannot keep Him from wanting to save you. You cannot keep Him from loving you, for He provided a Savior, His own Son, to die in your place. The Lord Jesus will save you if you will receive the free gift of salvation that He offers. My friend, things are not going to continue as they are now. It is coming to an end, and judgment will come. You and I are living in a world which is moving toward judgment.

We tend to think in terms of “balance scale” justice. God thinks in terms of mercy. He wants everyone to accept His gracious forgiveness so as not to pay the ultimate penalty for sin. Especially since it has already been paid for them! Listen to this podcast to learn of the promise of God that a day of judgment is coming for all who reject Christ.

ARE YOU AN EYEWITNESS?  (2 Peter 1:16-18)

ARE YOU AN EYEWITNESS? (2 Peter 1:16-18)

November 15, 2016

Have you ever been an eyewitness to a crime? At the age of 17, I was the victim of an armed robbery at the store I was working at, and at the age of 18, I was the victim of an assault by a gang of teenagers. In both cases, I was expected to describe what the person, or people, looked like, how tall they were, how much they weighed, how they were dressed, what race they were, were they male or female, and to describe exactly what happened. This is what eyewitnesses do, they testify to the activities that occurred and who did what in the crime. If a suspect is caught, then they are required to testify against them, under oath, swearing that what they are saying is true and factual, so help them God.

Have you ever been asked to be an eyewitness for God? Well, you might say, how is that possible, for we have never seen God? So, let me ask you a question, is your eyesight the only sense that you have which allows you to describe what has happened in an event? Can you use your ears, your taste, your smell, or what you can feel with your hands? How about your feelings, your experiences?

If somebody asked you, is Jesus really the Son of God? Could you be an eyewitness to that fact? Could you testify that Jesus Christ is the Son of God under oath in a courtroom? You should be able to. If Jesus Christ is real in your life, if you have experienced His power in your life, if His spirit lives in your heart, then you should know Jesus Christ better than you do your own spouse. I said a couple of weeks ago, that when you get to heaven and the Lord is waiting for you, you are not going to meet a stranger, you are going to meet your best friend. You are not going to meet somebody you have only read about in a book, you are going to meet someone you have a heart knowledge of. If you are an adopted child of God, joint heir with Christ, then you should be able to testify with absolute confidence as to who Jesus Christ is.

In addition to being an eyewitness to who Christ is, you are likely to also quote from the Bible as proof of who Jesus Christ is, because the Bible is what we base our faith on. We say we believe it because it is the Word of God. Now, if you do, then inevitably, somebody is going to raise the question, How do you know that the Bible is really the Word of God, that it is not just the writings of a bunch of people with a creative imagination?

Listen to this podcast to learn how to answer the questions, is the Bible real, is the gospel of salvation true, and is Jesus Christ the Son of God. Listen to the Word of God as we hear the answers directly from an eyewitness to the Lord’s majesty.

Amen.

A FAITH BASED ON EXPERIENCE (1 Peter 1:5-7)

A FAITH BASED ON EXPERIENCE (1 Peter 1:5-7)

February 14, 2016
When I was a child and my Father wanted me to learn something that I would remember, he often had me experience it first, and then explain how important that concept could be in my life.  He called it character building and it usually involved me doing some type of work around the house.  For example, when he wanted me to learn that it is better to earn what you have in this world, than to steal it from somebody else who had worked for it, either by outright theft or by getting the government to steal it for you, he would put me to work.  He taught me that a benefit of hard work is the payment of something you want in return, be it money, or something else.

Learning from experience can come in a couple of ways, we can learn from our own experience, or we can learn from the experience of watching or listening to others.  For instance, I don’t have to jump from the top of a tall building to know that this is not something I want to do.  I have seen what happens to others when they contact the ground at a high rate of speed, and it is not pretty.  I learned this lesson from the experience of others.  

When we learn from our own experience, we often have a deeper understanding of what it takes to get through this type of trial.  I know that I never had a true appreciation for what a person goes through when they lose a very close loved one until I lost my father, and then my mother.  There is a deep feeling of anguish that does not come from watching others.  I have a much deeper sense of empathy for others now and it is because God allowed me to experience this trial myself.  

One of the key concepts that Peter is trying to teach us in the very first verses of this book is how certain our faith is, and how it is not based on a hope-so type of knowledge, but it is based on a know-so type of knowledge.  

When he talks of having hope, it is not a vague type of hope in the things that are to come, it is a know-so type of hope, an expectant hope, and a certain hope.  We know that Jesus is alive today because we know that He rose from the grave.  The Bible tells this is true, and secular history tells us that this is true.

We know for a fact that Jesus is coming again to reign as Lord of lords and King of kings, and we are absolutely certain that Jesus has prepared for us a place in heaven where we will spend eternity living with Him.  This is our know-so, expectant, hope.  

Peter now moves from the certain hope we have in Christ, to our faith based on experience and substance.  Faith is another weak word in the English language, but in the Bible our faith is based on the promises of God, the certainty of Christ, and the experiences we have in times of trial, and through watching others go through trials.  It is a faith based on the experience we have in Christ.  
OUR CERTAIN HOPE OF THINGS TO COME (1 Peter 1:3b-4)

OUR CERTAIN HOPE OF THINGS TO COME (1 Peter 1:3b-4)

February 7, 2016
As believers, our expectant, certain, hope looks forward to the things that the Word of God promises are to come for us.  That hope includes eternal life with our Lord Jesus in a heaven that contains wonders and beauty beyond anything that we can imagine or know about on this earth.

1 Cor 2:9
9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
KJV

In times of our deepest sorrow, this is our certain hope.  

In times of our greatest tragedy, this is our certain hope.

In times of our greatest loss, this is our certain hope.

When death comes for us, this is our certain hope.  

That Jesus Christ is coming again and that He has prepared a place in heaven for us.  

John 14:1-3
1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
KJV

This is our certain hope that we base our faith on.  This is our certain hope of the things that are to come. 
WE HAVE AN EXPECTANT HOPE (1 Peter 1:3a)

WE HAVE AN EXPECTANT HOPE (1 Peter 1:3a)

February 1, 2016
What do you worry about most when you face a difficult hardship?

Being physically harmed?  Ridiculed?  The loss of a job and the financial problems that follow?  The loss of your health?  The loss of a loved one?  Loneliness? Your own death?

The word hope is commonly defined as a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.  We say things like “I hope we have something good to eat tonight,” or “I hope my boss is in a good mood today.”  Hope is always looking forward and it is important to have hope, or a positive outlook on life, to hope that better things are coming our way.  To not have any hope during difficult times can make recovering that much more difficult or even impossible.  

The amount of hope a person has is often based on those people around them who can help them, to provide comfort, and assistance.  When you are alone, without help, it is hard to find hope.  Our hope is also based on the certainty, or uncertainty, of the future we see for ourselves.  When good things are coming in our lives it is easy to have hope.  It gets much more difficult when we see nothing but dark clouds or hardship in front of us.  This is the way the world generally thinks of the world hope.  It is a wishful desire for better things to come.

How does the meaning of the word hope change when you become a believer in Jesus Christ?  Instead of simply having a wish or desire for a certain thing to happen, the word hope means certainty for a believer in Jesus Christ.  A believer never has to worry about who will be around to provide support, for they have the certainty of the Holy Spirit living within their heart to provide strength, wisdom, power, and comfort.  This is not just a feeling, but an absolute certainty of His presence and power in their lives.  

The believer also knows with total certainty that there is eternal life in heaven that follows this temporary life on earth.  Imagine the hope that comes from knowing without a doubt that you will have endless thousands upon thousands of years of living without old age, hunger, persecution, disease, or death.  A believer knows that heaven is real and, therefore, hell is real, but this is not a concern to the believer, for they have absolute certainty that living in heaven with Jesus Christ is their next destination.   

A born again, child of God, a true believer in Jesus Christ, who has Jesus Christ as their Lord and Master, looks at difficult times with an expectant hope.  The word expectant means that they are eager for the future to come, and they are excited about what is coming.  They can be expectant because they have absolute certainty in the promises that God has provided for them.  

They can easily ask themselves, how can I fail to overcome the problems of this world with the power of the Holy Spirit of Christ in my heart.  How can death harm me, if I know what is going to happen next?  Death is nothing more than a weigh station to eternity. 

In his final words to Timothy, Paul expressed this expectant hope eloquently.

2 Tim 4:6-8
6 For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
8 Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
KJV

There was no doubt in Paul’s mind what laid beyond the grave.  He was absolutely certain of his eternity with Jesus.  He knew that Jesus would be waiting for him, ready to say, welcome home thou good and faithful servant.  This is the expectant hope of the believer.  Listen to this podcast to learn how you can have an expectant hope.
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