Summary: When we are standing before the throne on Judgment Day, perhaps one of the scariest words we will ever hear is, "NEXT!"
Every Sunday evening, after I get home from church, I start trying to think about what to preach about the next Sunday. I go through many possibilities, and then it happens – every week the same thing. Come Monday afternoon I have one thought in my mind that just won’t go away, and after spending time praying about it, I generally find that is what the Holy Spirit is telling me to preach about in my next sermon.
This time was a little different, though. I have had this thought going through my mind for over a week, and I have tried my best to go on to other thoughts, but each time this thought comes back, it comes back stronger than before. Therefore, today, I am going to talk about hell.
America has many churches today that, to me, seem like they are so concerned with getting the huge congregations that they don’t have any more focus on preaching the accurate and full word of God. Many churches do not offer invitations anymore, and many pastors don’t even bother carrying their Bibles to church, either. Some of the larger churches don’t even give sermons, instead, they have all kinds of dramas, including secular dramas that don’t have anything at all to do with God, Christ, or salvation.
All this leads to the dumbing down of the American Christian. We are leading our people astray because we just don’t want to upset anyone anymore. If I preach on this, somebody will get offended and make nasty comments; if I preach on that, somebody else will get offended and they will make comments. In the old days, we didn’t call this being ‘offended’, we called it being ‘convicted’. I would sincerely hope that we don’t have any of those people in our congregation, as I will preach the word of God as accurately as I know how, and with as much love in my heart as I can possibly have, but nevertheless, I will preach the truth and will not sugar coat it.
If you start reading the Old Testament and continue forward to the end of the Bible, you will find many prophecies that must take place in order for the end time to come upon us. In past generations, they would quote those different prophecies and tell you which ones had been fulfilled and which ones were waiting to be fulfilled.
I would like to ask you to give me your undivided attention for the next couple of minutes, if you would. I want you to hear what I say to you. I am not a scholar and I am not the most-read student of Bible prophecy, but I happen to think that everything that needs to be in place for the Lord Jesus to come back has finally been put in place. I think the only thing we’re waiting on is for God to decide it is time. Now, that being said, we must be honest and tell you that it could be right now, or it could be thousands of years in the future. I personally feel that it will surely be sooner than later. If it is just one day away, don’t you think you’d better make sure you are ready?
It is not my intent to try and scare you, or to try and set a loose date of when this will occur. The Bible specifically says it is not our business to know the day or the hour.
In MATTHEW 24:36, Jesus says
‘No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.’
It is my intent, however, to let you know what is going to happen some day, and what might happen at any time, and that is the second coming of Jesus to gather His faithful up with Him. And it is my intention to help you focus on that so you will not be left behind.
Let’s talk about …
1. THE JUDGMENT
In MATTHEW 24:44, Jesus goes on to say,
‘So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect Him.’
Each of us will be held accountable for whether or not we were serious about Jesus. We shall all stand before our maker and be judged for all that we have said or done in our lives.
Have you ever thought just how you might feel when you are standing in front of the Lord? I think it will be much different that we would ever think.
Imagine seeing your favorite celebrity at the mall. Imagine he walks right up to you and asks you for the time. How would you feel? Seeing him on TV or in the movies is quite different than seeing Him face to face, isn’t it?