Summary: The signs point to the soon return of Jesus Christ. How long will you wait before you begin to warn unbelievers about their fate?
February 8, 2009
Text: Luke 21:5-36
Subject: The Second Coming
Title: How Long Will You Wait?
I am going to continue this week in the same direction we were headed last week. If you remember, last week I challenged you to be a disciple maker. This week I want to start off with what Jesus told His disciples in Mark 16:15-16, 15He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. 16Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. I really want to focus on two things – preaching the gospel and the result of unbelief. I know that I don’t even need to tell you this and you are probably tired of hearing it from me, every believer is commanded to be a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is not a suggestion but a command. Now, once you share the gospel the seed is planted and what happens next is up to your audience. Those who accept the gospel message will be saved; those who won’t accept it will be condemned.
Now I know that you are sitting there thinking, “Doesn’t he ever get tired of talking about this”? You know I could be with you like I was with my children when I was trying to get them to do what I said.. “I’m only going to tell you this one more time.” That stopped when one of our daughters answered, “Good, cause I’m kind of getting tired of hearing it.” The reason I continue to talk about witnessing is because time is growing short. We talk about it. We say we believe it. We know that it’s a reality, but what are we doing about it?
Turn over to Luke 21 and I want to begin with where we will finish up, verse 36, Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
Lord open my eyes to see and my ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church. Then Lord let us not be just hearers of the word but doers of the word.
I want you to see how close we are to the end.
Verse 8, 8He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. You know about the false Messiahs of the past – James Jones, David Koresh, the Heaven’s Gate cult Where the leader of the group claimed to be the Christ. The latest - September 12, 2006 - Puerto Rican-born Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda presides over a worldwide movement that believes he is God -the second coming of Jesus Christ. From South Florida Miranda leads his followers, mostly Hispanic, in a different gospel, the "freedom to indulge" because he teaches that there is no sin, no devil and no hell to pay. The church is called "Creciendo en Gracia" or Growing in Grace Ministry.
Verse 9, When you hear of wars and revolutions, do not be frightened.” Of all the 3400 + years of recorded history only 268 have not seen war. 42 million were killed in wars in the 20th century. There are currently 38 major conflicts in the world today. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.” 10Then he said to them: “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
Verse 11, There will be great earthquakes…The World Almanac tells us that there were only 21 earthquakes of major strength between the years 1000 and 1800. But between 1800 and 1900 there were 18 major earthquakes. In the next 50 years, between 1900 and 1950, there were 33 major quakes, and between 1950 and 1991 there were 93 major earthquakes, almost tripling the number of the previous half century, and claiming the lives of 1.3 million people around the world.
famines … Of the 6.6 billion people in the world today 923 million live in areas where there is not enough food. In addition to that here in the US the state of California is facing the possibility of the worst drought in its history. Deserts in the American Southwest and around the globe are creeping toward heavily populated areas as the jet streams shift
and pestilences in various places… AIDS, bird flu, West Nile virus, Avian flu, Mad cow disease… What else do I have to say?
and fearful events and great signs from heaven… Don’t know what that all means but there has been talk among astronomers of a possible asteroid impact in the near future.