Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The End Times

Recently I gave a sermon called, 'The Day of the LORD is Coming' at our church. We are studying the book of Malachi (which is HARD) and we came to chapter 4 where it speaks of heaven and hell. Sometimes it's very hard to wrap our minds around heaven and hell and especially the end times; mainly because we don't want to, or we don't want to take the time to study.
Through my studies of the Bible, and yes that means Revelation, I've come to this conclusion:
I need to live in joy and not fear.
Ok...that sounds like a nice tweet and not a theological stance. Well, let me explain. As a Christian, I'm a believer in Jesus Christ. I don't just know about Him, I believe in Him-which means I follow Him. I believe that when I die, I get to open my eyes and see my savior Jesus. I have a 'Blessed Assurance' that He will welcome me into His presence. Until then-how it happens, the signs, how Jesus will reach the lost...I don't know. I can read prophecy from the Bible and put together my opinion, but I need to realize that God is God. Isaiah 55:9, 'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.' 
Sometimes I fear 'End Times Prophecy' has become an industry by those who are looking to write a best seller (not all but some!). But instead of trying to convince you on how the end times will happen, I would much rather spend my time making sure you know Jesus. I want to see the Holy Spirit work in your life, because He convicts, He supplies your needs, He fills you!! We are privileged to be apart of the process. 
So what's going to happen, when will it all happen, are there signs that we can decipher now????????? Your blogpost title said End Times!!!!!
All great discussions around a cup of coffee, but there is ultimately a much better discussion to have.
Do you know Jesus?
You see, we will all have our opinions about end times, and even heaven and hell, but there are some non-negotiable items for me. 
Matthew 24:36, (Jesus speaking) 'But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.' So even though I might like putting together world events like a huge lego ship, I don't know when Jesus is coming back.
Matthew 25:46, (Jesus speaking) 'Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.' Yes, I believe when Jesus comes people are going to end up in heaven and hell, and be there forever. 
And yes, it's still my favorite: John 3:16-17, 'For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.'
This is why it's so important you know Jesus. God's great commission for me is not to persuade people to agree with me on how the end times will happen-it's to bring people to the feet of Jesus and have them make a decision.

I hope that when you think of heaven and hell, and even the end times, you can find joy in knowing you win. That's right-YOU WIN, because JESUS HAS ALREADY WON. 

If you'd still like to have that discussion around coffee-great. This cup is on me.


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