Summary: Truth be told, the Bible says that the race is not given to the swift, or the battle to the strong, but to the one who endures. So it is necessary to shake of that defeated attitude and fight this fight to the very end.
The series is not over.
Jude 1: 17 – 23
17 But you, my dear friends, must remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ told you, 18 that in the last times there would be scoffers whose purpose in life is to enjoy themselves in every evil way imaginable. 19 Now they are here, and they are the ones who are creating divisions among you. They live by natural instinct because they do not have God’s Spirit living in them. 20 But you, dear friends, must continue to build your lives on the foundation of your holy faith. And continue to pray as you are directed by the Holy Spirit. F6 21 Live in such a way that God’s love can bless you as you wait for the eternal life that our Lord Jesus Christ in his mercy is going to give you. 22 Show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. 23 Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. There are still others to whom you need to show mercy, but be careful that you aren’t contaminated by their sins.
Intro: In the 2004 American League championship series, the Boston Red Sox were down 3 games to none in a 7 game set. Now history says that NO MLB, to date, had ever come back from being down 3 games to none. No one in their right mind thought that this bunch of self proclaimed “idiots” could pull something like this off. Most importantly, I don’t think even the Red Sox themselves believed that this could be done. That is, until they got together and made it possible. In days like these, there are a lot of people who feel that they are down “3-0”, even though they are struggling and putting forth their best efforts. Truth be told, the Bible says that the race is not given to the swift, or the battle to the strong, but to the one who endures. So it is necessary to shake of that defeated attitude and fight this fight to the very end. The thing to look forward to is that, the very end that I talk about will be just the beginning. The start of when we will be with Christ forever. So do what you have to do for endure for Christ, the pay might not seem like much, but the retirement plan is OFF THE HOOK!
Question: How do I endure to the end?
I. You have to be a thermostat. (v.17-19)
a. Pick and choose your companions are.
1. Iron sharpens Iron. (Only something sharper than you can actually sharpen you)
2. If someone is not helping you, it is not positive.
(A person that is not helping is not necessarily hurting you by stopping growth, but they could be stagnating you.)
b. Get a close connection with Godly people.
(That is why the G12 vision is so great. You get surrounded with people who all have same goal)
1. A close connection with someone who is Godly will help you deal with the ungodly.
2. Once you establish a connection & a trust with someone, be honest and open.
3. The ungodly are grumblers, complainers, and sinners.
i. Ask yourself, When I am down, what advice will this type of person give me?
ii. This type of person only tear down, they do not build up.
c. Have the courage to be different.
II. Build on your foundation of faith. (v.20a)
a. Do what the Bible instructs you to do..
1. Faith comes by not only hearing but doing. (James 1:22)
James 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. NKLV
2. The Bible has answers for EVERY situation you can come up with.
b. Develop a SERIOUS, CONSTANT prayer life.
1. Prayer is like motor oil for a car. Sure you can go a while with a little, but soon……
2. Prayer is the first means of communication to God.
i. When we dedicate ourselves to prayer, God rewards us. (Matthew 6:6)
Matthew 6:6 But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. NKJV
j. Don’t base yours on what others are doing in and with their Christianity.
a. A lot of times we base our Christianity on other peoples.
b. It’s important that we know that we have to account to God for OURSELVES FIRST.
k. Do not worry about what has occurred in your past.
a. Your past is just that, the past. It is behind you.
b. Your past is supposed to teach you not taunt you.
c. Your past should only affect for the positive.