Thursday, July 5, 2012

Staying Afloat in a World That's Drowning

Start with Prayer---

Scripture text: Genesis 6:1-8; 11-14; 17-18;7:1
Scripture Text: Luke 17:26-27

Today we are going to talk about staying afloat in a world that is drowning.  Just like it was in the days of Noe so shall it be in the day that the son of man comes.  Lets see what it was like in Noah’s days.  In Noah days despite the warning of a soon coming flood that would destroy the earth only one family was saved from destruction because they listened to and obeyed God’s instruction.  God had sent Noah (a preacher of righteousness) the bible calls him to deliver a message of repentance to an untoward generation.  No one listened.  They just kept on eating, drinking, getting married.  Living the same old life.  They weren’t concerned about salvation after all what did they have to fear.  They had never even heard of rain.  It had never rained before why should they possibly believe it would ever rain.  Perhaps no one responded to Noah’s message and we know that no one except Noah’s own family was saved.  How sad!  However, I bet when Noah first started preaching about the flood, although I know there were many scoffers, I believe there could have been a few who actually did believe him, after all Noah was a reputable man.  I believe there were even some who repented and tried to live an good life.  However, it was 120 years from the time Noah started preaching his message of repentance until the flood actually came.  That’s a long time to preach the same message without anything happening.  Maybe there would have been many more passengers on the ark along with Noah’s family had the flood came right after Noah started preaching about it.  However, 120 is a long time to wait.  Many probably asked, “Noah, when is the rain gonna come.  We’re waiting”.  There may have been some believers who died during that 120 years, but I bet the others simply got tired of hearing the same old message and gave up.  Nevertheless, Noah, his wife, their three sons and their wives, eight people were saved.  They held out until the end.  They continued in the faith until the flood actually came.

Let’s talk about today.  How many times do you suppose in your short lives have you heard that Jesus is coming back for us.  That we would be raptured away?  100, 1000?

Have you ever questioned when, how long is it going to be? When is he coming back?  I have been hearing this forever.

The disciples asked this question to Jesus one day.  Let’s see how he responded.

Matt. 24:3-8;12-14;36-44

Although we’ve heard it our whole lives that Jesus is coming back soon, here the bible tells us that no man knows the day nor the hour of his return.  Our only instructions is to watch and be ready.  What are we to watch for?  Well the bible tells us what it’s going to be like in the last days.  According to all the bible tells us we are truly living in the last days, however, the last days seem like they have been the last “years”.  When is he ever gonna come?  When he’s coming is not the focus of the message, I’m sure many in Noah’s days asked.  When is it going to rain, Noah?  When?  When Jesus is coming is not the focus of the message it’s that he is coming as promised and we must be looking for his return and we must be ready and waiting.  If we all knew when he was coming we would do whatever we wanted until the very last minute and then try to get ready.  We would have a deathbed repentance policy.  That just don’t work.  However, just like it was in Noah’s days, the people went on about their business never giving salvation a thought.  It was a foreign concept to them.  It’s easy for us to begin to feel like that after hearing so often that Jesus is coming back.  Many have given up the faith or say in their hearts “I’ll get right later, I’ve got time”.  Many (most) give no thought at all about when he could return or how soon that day is.  Jude said that we must earnestly contend for the faith.  We can’t allow ourselves to become lax because God is not slack concerning his promise.  Just like Peter said one day with the Lord is as a 1000 years and a 1000 years as one day.  We can never know when he’s coming but we must be on guard,  and must stay (or get) ready for that day.  How can we be ready for that day?

Noah told the folks in his day...repent of your evil deeds or there will be a judgment of flood.  If you repent you can come aboard the ark (the only means of protection) and when the flood comes you will be saved.

The bible talks about baptism being what saves us just like the water saved Noah and his family...

1 Pet. 3:20-21—which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.  The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us.

In order for us to be ready for Jesus’ return we must repent, be baptized and then we will receive the promise of the Holy Ghost.  Then we must stay ready.

Memory verse:  

Matt. 24:42—Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

That godly men took ungodly woman to themselves to be wives or just lovers.  They had babies with more than one woman.  They allowed their flesh to take control.
only one family was saved—only one family will be saved when the Lord returns and that is HIS family who are called by HIS (Jesus') name.

 Have you noticed what sad shape our world is in today.   I’m not talking about the earth itself, although it is suffering also with pollution, trash, oil spills; but, I am talking about the corruption of the people.  We are living in very evil, vile, times.  As I sit at work and look out the window at the passers by, I have increasingly noticed the ungodliness, unholiness, it’s a dog eat dog world.  Everyone is only worried about themselves.  Life is general is all about what can I have or do that will make me feel good.  People are becoming increasingly rude. Shoving and pushing in line.  No tolerance for others.  No regard or respect for others. 

This kind of sounds like we are living in the last days according to what the bible says, huh?  The bible says that in the last days evil men and seducers will wax worse and worse.  The signs of the times are all around us yet we’ve heard so often that Jesus is coming soon that we have become somewhat immune to these words.  We no longer pay attention to them.

Heb. 11:7—By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

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