ARE YOU READY
Text: Philippians 3:12-14 / II Timothy 4:6-8
Vs. 1-5 a final charge, blueprint for success
(1) James Dobson- has “End of Life” Test, what matters is
Who you loved
Who loved you
How you loved God
Voltaire- French Atheist- spent life trying to prove that there was no such thing as God. Yet proclaimed he wished he’d never been born.
Jay Gould- multimillionaire- upon death stated “I am the most miserable man alive”
Darwin- proponent of evolution on his deathbed. Supposedly said “I have based my life on a lie”.
Polycarp- read story- no regrets / I am ready
(3) Today talk about a man who was ready to stand before GOD
a. He was a zealous persecutor- Yet God saved him
b. He was a great leader, pious, wealthy- he counted it nothing
(4) Paul was imprisoned in Rome, two esquire Ferega Pathemius sent by Nero to carry out execution. Paul prayed, they converted, they led him to be beheaded.
1st imprison- knew he’d be out
now in Rome, knew he’d die
(5) Paul said “I have no regrets”
b. Rachel Scott (today)
c. Can you say that?
(6) Take time, look back over the past 1, ½, week, month, Do you have regrets?
What are they?
Who did they affect?
How did they hurt?
Chances are that when you stand before God, you will be just as you are now! Are you ready to stand before God with those regrets?
a. No one has ever said...
I regret not spending more time at work
Not hanging out with my friends
Not making more money
Not watching a ball game
Not fighting more
b. But they have said
Wish had spent more time with children and family
Spent more time getting to know God
(8) Do you have any regrets? Yes
What will you do with them?
(9) I am not even asking you if you are saved, are you ready?
I. I Will Determine To Fight the Good Fight vs. 7
A. There are some things worth fighting for.
(1) David fought Goliath
(2) Three Hebrews fought
(4) Esther fought for Jesus
(5) Christ chased money changers out for honor
(6) Christ fought for souls of man
(7) Family, children, peace, freedom
B. The things we should be fighting for are too often left unattended.
(1) Spend more time perfecting our shot than praying for our families.
(2) Spend more time reading magazines and watching TV than we do reading the Living Word
(3) Spend more time making excuses than we do following instructions.
C. Why do we not fight the fight?
(1) Same reason the Army of God refused to fight the Gaint Philistines.
(2) We only see the here and now and not the effects of not doing anything
EX: Children being taught what is important now rather than later
II. I Will Determine To Finish the Race vs. 7
ILLUS: Winston Churchill said “Success is never final, failure is never fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.”
A. Too often we start something and never finish it.
(1) Alter trips
(2) Promises never kept
B. II Corinthians 8:10-11
- Paul encourages church at Corinth to finish what they started
C. Christ never did quit after the fast in the garden on the cross
D. What have you quit on and now regret?
III. I Will Always Keep the Faith vs. 7
A. This statement is the summary of what the other statements describe
(1) Athletes- spend all life training for sports
(2) Paul said he had trained for the cause of Christ.
B. In life and doctrine, he had stayed the course, with integrity
(1) He was under extreme pressure: ship wreck, arrest, imprisoned, never charged
(2) What do you believe?
C. Do you have any regrets concerning your faith?
(1) Has your spiritual life been one of constant up and downs?
(2) Regrets are destructive
GO Back to verse 6
IV. Ready To Meet God vs. 6
A. Can you honestly say I am ready to stand before God?
B. “Drink offering”
(1) Lev. 23:18 18‘And you shall offer with the bread seven lambs of the first year, without blemish, one young bull, and two rams. They shall be as a burnt offering to the LORD, with their grain offering and their drink offerings, an offering made by fire for a sweet aroma to the LORD.
(2) Follow burnt and grain offering, it was the final offering
(3) Paul saw his death as a final offering to God that has been full of sacrifices to God
(1) to hoist anchor and set sail
(2) To take down a tent
(3) Loosing of a prisoner
(4) Paul was about to be released from bondage of this world
to dwell with God.
(1) Take time, look back, do you have any regrets?
(2) Not enough family time, time with God, habits broken, too much giving into sin
(3) There is nothing you can do about your past regrets but make sure they do not reoccur.
Phil 3:13 13Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead,
(4) Don’t make today another regret.