Summary: Are you ready? If you were to die right now would you go to Heaven? God wants you to know positively that you are saved or not.
Are You Ready?
I dedicate this sermon first of all to God for showing me this wonderful truth. And to my friend, Keith who shouted to others this truth by his actions until the day he died. I know I will see him in Heaven.
I went to Curacoa for my mission trip last March. I went because I wanted to tell others about Jesus. I went to teach but instead I was taught. What I was taught there shook me and woke me up. Being there also gave me character traits that I would have never developed if I had stayed at home. I could tell you what it looked like there or what I ate…but none of those things changed my life. If you do want to know about those things you can ask me after I’m done. Before the trip I didn’t realize how soon Jesus was coming and wasn’t excited about Him coming either. I was like some of you. I knew Jesus was coming soon. I knew he died on the cross and saved me. But I didn’t really understand fully.
Imagine that it is a cold rainy day and you decided to pull up a chair and read the newspaper. On the cover its says: Moderate earthquakes and a cold, heavy rain Wednesday added to the misery of hundreds of thousands of people in northeastern Congo, where a volcanic eruption destroyed 40% of the largest city in the region. You shake your head and see another article underneath: As the administration intensified contacts with Iraqi opposition leaders, President Bush said Friday he has no timetable for deciding on a military strike against Iraq and may not decide this year. You turn the page and continue reading: A jury recessed for the weekend Friday in trial of the man charged with killing 7-year-old Danielle van Dam. Prosecutors have argued that the "smoking gun" was her blood on David Westerfield’s jacket. Westerfield could face the death penalty if convicted. Depressed you set down the newspaper. You don’t even have to (continue reading to hear) read in a newspaper to know about the increase of broken homes or substance abuse in young people. In 1940 for every 1000 marriages 2 ended up divorcing. In 1990 for every 1000 marriages 4.7 ended up divorcing. In a span of 50 years the divorce rate more then doubled. Just imagine what it is now. I can go on and on about how bad this world is getting but you get the point. Turn in your Bibles to Matthew 24:6,7; I’m reading from the Clear Word version. You know what? JESUS IS COMING SOON!!! If Jesus is coming soon then a good question to ask is "Am I ready? Are you ready?
Some people feel it is a sin to know positively without a doubt that you’re saved. This is a myth. In fact God wants everyone to be saved. Turn your Bible to 1 Timothy 2:4.
Why would our Father want us to worry about whether or not we are saved? Turn to Matthew 6:34; "So don’t worry about tomorrow. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Tomorrow will have its own worries." Isn’t worrying about if we are saved, worrying about tomorrow? I think it is.
Others have a hard time because they feel that the have made too many mistakes or one big mistake. God can’t forgive them. This is also a myth. God can forgive all of your sins now matter how big they are. This is a strange yet wonderful fact. Turn to 1 John 1:9.
A young man was at the end of his rope. Seeing no way out he dropped to his knees in prayer. "Lord, I can’t go on," he said. "I have too heavy a cross to bear."
The Lord replied, "My son, if you can’t bear its weight, just place your cross inside this room. Then open that other door and pick out any cross you wish." The young man was filled with relief.
"Thank you Lord," he sighed, and he did what he was told. Upon entering the other door, he saw many other crosses, some so large the tops weren’t even visible. Then he spotted a tiny cross leaning against the far wall. "I’d like that one Lord," he whispered.
And the Lord replied, "My son, that is the cross you just brought in." Let God take your burdens your life. Don’t settle for some cheap imitation.
Sadly others don’t accept the gift of salvation because they think they have to do something. Turn to Romans 10:5
I shook my head in disbelief. This couldn’t be the right place. After all, I couldn’t possibly be welcome here. I had been given an invitation several times, by several different people, and had finally decided to see what this place was all about. But, this just couldn’t be the right place. Quickly, I glanced down at the invitation that I clutched in my hand. I scanned past the words, "Come as you are. No jacket required." and found the location. Yes, I was at the right place. I peered through the window again and saw a room of people whose faces seemed to glow with joy. All were neatly dressed, adorned in fine garments and appeared strangely clean as they dined at this exquisite restaurant.