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Summary: We live in a day where everyone wants to know about the future. People will consult their horoscope, read tea leaves or whatever it takes to uncover the future. The truth is we are better off not knowing. Actually we must make sure we know the one who

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"Step Into the Future"

Joshua 1:1-9 and Ecclesiastes 8:7

In the film Back to the Future, Michael Fox plays the role of a guy named Marty MacFly who suddenly is thrown back into time 30 years earlier. Because he knows what the future hold for his family he feels compelled to make sure things happen the way they are supposed to. His future Mom and Dad actually now go to high school with him so he makes sure that they go to the prom together and fall in love with each other. It was the most successful movie of the year in 1985. How many of you have seen it?

The movie has prompted other shows such as a TV series called "Early Edition." Did you ever watch it? I only saw a few programs, but its storyline was about a young man who somehow was able to read tomorrow’s newspaper today. In other words, he was able to know what was going to happen a day before it actually happened. So let me ask you a question. If you were suddenly thrown back in time and you were able to know what was going to happen before it happened, what would you do? How would you use that knowledge? f you knew where the winning lottery ticket was going to be sold, would you go there to hopefully buy it? If you knew that the stock market was going to go up, would you buy low & sell high, & make a lot of money? if you knew that someone was going to be in trouble & needed help, would you run to help them?

Maybe you would be a hero. You knew someone was in danger & would die, would you be there to prevent that from happening? What would you do if you knew what was going to happen tomorrow?

Many people today are obsessed with the idea of trying to learn the future. They look into crystal balls, read tea leaves, & check their horoscope. I saw a fortune cookie this week and the note inside said, don’t believe what fortune cookies tell you. They got it right. The truth is, none of us really knows the future here upon this earth. Solomon talks about that several times in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Ecclesiastes 8:7 says, "Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?" There is an answer to his question, & the answer is "God." In fact, He is the only one who really knows the future. For us we often say, there are only 2 things that are certain. Death and taxes. We do not have the privilege of knowing what will be in the future. Life is very uncertain. So how do we face the future? Look at what the Bible tells us.

First of all, there are 3 things God says, "Don’t do." The first one is: "Don’t presume about tomorrow." Proverbs 27:1 says, "Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth." Notice the word "boast." Don’t go around bragging about your plans for tomorrow or next week or next year because life is uncertain. We may not even be here so don’t be presumptuous."

Second, he says, "Don’t panic about tomorrow." Jesus says: "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself" (Matthew 6:34). It is actually a good thing for most of us that we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. For most of us we would just have more to worry about. Be honest, most of us think we have far more to worry about than everyone else.

Third, God says, "Don’t procrastinate until tomorrow." Ecclesiastes says, "If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done."

I wonder how many of us promised ourselves last January that we were going to do something this year that we have not yet done? Probably most of us. We make resolutions. We say we’re going to do this & we’re going to do that. But too often we never actually get around to doing it. As someone wrote, "Procrastination is my sin. It only brings me sorrow. I know I ought to change my life. And I will ------- tomorrow." Now there are also 3 things God tells us we should do.

Look with me at the first chapter of the book of Joshua. Here’s the setting. God freed the children of Israel from Egyptian slavery. But because of their disobedience, they have been living in the wilderness for 40 years. Moses has just died, & now it is Joshua’s turn to lead the people. The older generation who had been so disobedient is now gone & the younger generation is ready to do what God tells them to do….they are ready to go the Promised Land.

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