Summary: A sermon examining the brevity of life and how we should live each day as if it were our last.
If Today Was Your Last Day...
There are times when we are reminded of the brevity of life. The phone rings and we are informed that a loved one has passed away unexpectedly. We open the newspaper and there in the obituaries is the name of a close friend or a co-worker. Sometimes people will go to the doctor for some tests and they are informed that they only have a few months to live. I imagine that it is difficult living with the knowledge that today may be your last. But the fact of the matter is... that is the case for each and every one of us. Though we may not have a terminal disease, none of us are promised the next breath.
Scripture proves this fact - Proverbs 27:1 ¶Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth. - This is also seen in - James 4:14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
It is an unchangeable fact that we could die today. Likewise, we live with the reality that Jesus could return at any moment. We say that we believe these truths, but do we really? If we truly believed that today could be our last then we may do some things a little different. If we knew the exact date of our passing we would probably have entirely different priorities. There is no reason for us to wait until the end to make things right. I hope that you don't put things off until you get some troubling test results before you get things in order.
We should live in a way that if we knew for a fact that we would die tomorrow we wouldn't have to change one single thing. This is possible...and this is exactly how each and every child of God should live.
I would like to look at these words of David, recorded in Psalm 84 and examine the proper mindset of a child of God and preach on the thought "If Today Was Your Last Day?" - Let me begin by asking the question:
I. If Today Was Your Last Day, Where Would You Go?
If you could go anywhere you wanted, where would it be? Would you go to a ballgame...a concert, maybe Disneyworld? Would you take a long vacation? Would you go hunting or fishing? Would you visit another part of America or another country? There is nothing wrong with any of these destinations. But nowhere is better than being in the presence of our Heavenly Father.
The Psalmist said "a day in thy courts is better than a thousand in the tents of wickedness." v10a - It is clear where he desired to be. And his desire was honorable.
- If today was your last day...
A. Would You Go To A Worshipping Place? - The Psalmist speaks of being "In the courts of the Lord". The word "courts" speaks of a place that is surrounded by walls. This reminds us of God's protection. The psalmist says that he would rather spend one day with God than a thousand anywhere else. That should be our desire as well.
We will spend eternity in His presence and that is a glorious thought. But we don't have to wait until we get to Heaven to be with the Lord! There is something special about entering this place and being in the presence of Almighty God. It is very confusing for me to see people who say they love God and long to be in His presence but 12:00 rolls around on Sunday and they can't wait to be dismissed. Even more confusing are those who say they love Jesus but they constantly neglect to assemble together with other believers. I echo what David said in Psalm 122:1 "I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD."
If today was your last day would you go to a worshipping place? Or would you go to a worldly place?
B. Would You Go To A Worldly Place? - "the tents of wickedness"
The psalmist goes on to say that he would rather be a doorkeeper in the “House of God” than to dwell in “the tents of wickedness”. Notice the contrast: Tents are a temporary place a house is considered permanent. My friend anything this world has to offer is like that tent... it is temporary. But those things that God offers His children are permanent... better yet they are ETERNAL!
Unfortunately there are multitudes of people who choose the temporary over the eternal. I have known some people who received a terminal diagnosis and they decided that they were going to "live it up" during the time that they had left. You see... in an attempt to mask the pain of knowing that time is short they tried to have as much "fun" as possible. As hard as they try, they never find that joy that they are seeking in the things of this world.