Summary: There is a time for change, a time appointed to all of us, a time appointed to everything. God is in control of all things and He has given His promise of salvation to those who believe in His Son. There will come a time when this earth and heaven will be
The Time For Change
Text: Ecclesiastes 3:1-15
Welcome to 2010. It seems that only yesterday we were faced with the the Y2K bug and the start of a new millennium. Now we're at the start of another decade and face the swine flu bug.(Sorry, the H1N1 virus.) Change happens.
I. Change Happens
A. We live in a world of Change
1. The evidence of change is all around us:
a. It is undeniable (cars, cell phones, etc.)
It is unstoppable: Youth fades to age, what was new becomes old.
It is natural: The sun sets to begin a new night, the night gives way to the sunrise of a new day.
Spring becomes Summer. Summer becomes Fall. Fall becomes Winter. Winter becomes Spring.
2. Change is inevitable.
b. So here we are today, to quote John Lennon “Another year over and a new one just begun...”
3. Change is inevitable, even for those who resist it, even for those who choose to ignore it. Change happens.
Change should not worry us; God is in control.
B. God Is in Control
1. Read Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven--
a. God has appointed the times and seasons which impact the course of our lives.
b. Even our death has been appointed.
Hebrews 9:27 And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment,
c. We might let this worry us but it should bring us hope because we know that God is in control.
2. We may have doubts.
a. We can have doubts when we look at the world. It doesn't seem to be doing all that well: Crime is up, abortion is up, homosexuality is on the rise, the nation is in debt, etc. It can be pretty discouraging. But, God has got it all under control.
3. God has a purpose in what He does even if we have a hard time understanding what that purpose is.
a. We can't see the total of God's work in our lives. We may see the beginning, or just the middle, and may never see the end. He knows the beginning from the end and He has us where He wants us.
b. The whole book of Job is given so we might understand the wisdom of trusting in God. We must wait with patience for the full revelation of God's will and trust in His providence.
Romans 8:28 , "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose."
4. God has purposed for His children some of the greatest changes.
a. We were once blind, dead sinners. Then by His word we are made aware of our sin and invited to change and become alive in God through His Son.
1) Jesus came preaching repentance. (Mark 1:14-15)
Repent and let each of you be baptized (Acts 2:38)
Paul preached “repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Acts 20:21)
To believe in Jesus requires change (repentance.)
Those who do not repent will perish (Luke 13:1-5)
b. 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” (John 3:16 Who ever believes in Him...)
Repentance will effect change in our minds, hearts, and bodies. Through obedience we change from slaves of sin to become slaves of righteousness (Romans 6:17-18)
c. The changes Paul writes of to the Ephesians: Ephesians 4:22-24 "... in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth."
d. The same changes made to those at Colossae:
Colossians 3:8-11 "But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him-- a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all."
5. God desires us to be like His Son
a. 2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.