LUKE 16:19-31 "FAMILIAR FACES IN THE FLAME"
* If I understand what my responsibility is, is to first to do what God wants me to do!
* I also have a responsibility of doing the work of an evangelist!
A) I hope that I can say something that will change your life & make our church become more
equipped for God! * Acts 1:8 "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost ......."
* God didn’t give the Holy Spirit just to make you shout and feel good! * These are by products!
B) God is saying, "I’ve given you the Holy Ghost so that you can get people saved & keep them
out of hell!" * Then & only then do we have the right to hoop & holler & shout & feel good!
* If you are not fulfilling the great commission, then you are not doing what the Holy Ghost was
given to you to start with, that is to witness for Jesus and win souls!
C) What you do with this message today determines what kind of Christian you will be!
* If you get this message, it will change your life and it will change our church!
D) Until we get a glimpse of familiar faces, until we see them in the flames of hell, we’re gonna sit
here having our little hoot-n-nannies & shout & cry while our moms & dads, brothers & sisters,
* kids & grand-kids, people we work with, neighbors & friends are getting closer to hell.
* And one day when you go by their casket, you’re gonna remember this sermon!
E) There’s familiar faces in the flame! * It’s the guy who cuts your hair, bags your groceries,
* It’s the guy down at the gas station, it’s people that are dear to you, familiar faces in the flame!
* Until we get this as individuals & church as a whole, we’ll never be what we should be for God!
F) Our text says, "There was a certain rich man." (parable?) * Notice that he doesn’t have a name!
* Just a certain guy who lived & died! * No, a certain rich man who lived & died & went to hell!
G) Most of the people in hell are just nameless people, aren’t they?
* Have you ever noticed at funerals that no one’s going to hell anymore?
* But I want to submit to you that there are going to be some familiar faces in the flame!
(1) BURN PICTURE! * This rich man had a mom, dad, he was a mother’s son,
* He was somebody’s uncle, he had children, brothers, he lived on this earth, somebody knew him!
* Tell of someone personal I know who went to hell (Ernest Belue).
* Looking up from hell, cursing saying, "Why didn’t you make me mad, why didn’t you pester me,
* Why didn’t you take the cursings, why didn’t you come back & talk to me? I’m in hell!"
A) People near you are going to hell because you are not trying to stop them!
* God’s already put someone on your heart, I know how God works!
B) Remember, the Holy Ghost was given to you, not just to make you feel good, but to get
people saved! * There’s familiar faces in the flame!
* I want you to think of somebody right now - how this story ends is up to you!
(2) LET’S LOOK AT THE DEATH OF THE UNSAVED AND WHAT FOLLOWS!
* Heb.9:27 "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:"
* 1 Pet.4:17-18 "For the time is come that judgment must ... and if it first begin at us, what shall
the end be ...? And if the righteous scarcely ... where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?"
* Mark 9:43-48 "And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter ......."
A) Not just an unnamed person! * Our problem is, we’re not putting names on them!
* I’m talking about our kids, neighbors, husband, wife, friend, the guy you work with,
* I’m talking familiar faces in the flame! * Today, somebody’s gonna die!
B) When you read the obituary ... "John Smith died ..." * No, John Smith died & went to heaven
or hell! * When Jesus went away, He said to, "Go get people saved!"
* My question is, "Are we doing all we can?" * What are you doing to keep souls out of hell?
* You already have them on your heart! * "Preacher, it’s not my fault he went to hell!"
* Is it? * Are you getting this? * We have forgotten what the church is all about!
C) Next time you pay for your gas, look at his face! * ... buy groceries, look at her face!
* "But Preacher, it was just hard to talk to them!" (Burn another picture!)
(3) TURN TO AMOS 3:12 * A shepherd is entrusted by a master to watch over a certain
group of sheep. * The master trusts that shepherd. * Listen to this!
A) In Israel, it was a common practice that before a master would hire a shepherd, he’d say,
* "Unrobe yourself," & the guy would have to undo his robe & show his body to him.
* "Well Preacher, that’s weird!" * No it isn’t! * Explain Amos 3:12
B) A lion comes, smells the sheep, and sneaks into the sheepfold.
* The shepherd knows he’s gonna have to stand before the master & give account for what he
has done. * So the shepherd goes after the sheep in the lion’s mouth ....... * Shepherd scarred.
C) When he stands before the master, the master says, "I want you to give account of my sheep."
* If that shepherd shows up with a smile on his face, grinning & a haughty attitude and says,
* "Well, I lost that one." * The master says to his servants, "Bind him & cast him in darkness,
he’s not fit to be a shepherd!" * And they cast him in a dark dungeon.
D) But if he comes up, scarred (that’s why the master has him disrobed) cause the more scars
they had from a lion indicated they was a good shepherd.
* If one came & had no scars, they’d pass him up for one who had scars, every time!
E) Here comes the shepherd & says, "I’m sorry, the lion that walketh about seeking whom ...
* He came & he took, but master, I did everything I could!"
* "Oh, you did?" * "Yes master I did." * Then he holds up 2 legs and a piece of an ear & says,
* "See, even when he was dragging him off, I was still trying!"
F) I mean when they had the life support system on him, I was still hollering in his ear!
* Even when he cussed me, slammed the door in my face, I kept going back!
* "Here master, I got two legs and a piece of an ear in my hand."
G) The master would then take him & love him and say, "You did all you could do ......."
* But many of us are gonna stand at the judgment seat of Christ & God’s gonna say,
* "What about it?" * Remember Peter, Jesus said, "Peter, do you love me?"
H) Keep the sheep out of the lion’s mouth! * When you stand ... you better make sure,
* That you’ve got two legs and a piece of an ear! * You better have some battle scars!
* You better have taken some cussings! * You better be able to say, I done all I could do!
* I’m gonna have to give account of people that I have failed to witness to!
I) You’ve got family going to hell & you’ve never really pinned them down and said,
* "Please don’t go to hell, please give your heart to Jesus, please get saved!"
J) If you had to stand before God right now, and He says, "Do you love me?"
* "Yes Lord, I love you!" * "Then where’s the two legs and piece of ear, Where’s the scars?"
* Our text says, "A certain man ..." * This was somebody’s dad, brother, uncle, husband, etc.
A) I hate to see people I know suffer! * It’s awful when your kids get sick & you’re helpless!
* Sometimes we see people suffer & we can’t do anything about it!
B) But we can do something about our loved ones in the flame! * Familiar faces in the flame!
* Familiar faces suffering! * "Preacher, what can I do?"
C) The only way to put out the fire is get them in the water, the living water!
* Familiar faces in the flame! * God’s laid a soul upon your heart!
* Your neighbor, workers, son, daughter, mom, dad, husband, wife, friend, uncle, etc.
* What are you gonna do about it? * Familiar faces in the flame!