Friday, October 26, 2012

Halloween Reading 2012

Greetings Project Ezra. We are just one week away from our 2012 Halloween reading.  I’m looking forward to hitting the street with our local crew to share the gospel, as I know many of you are.  I would encourage you not to miss the great opportunity Halloween provides to talk about spiritual things.  Images of death are front and center (and sadly used as entertainment), which provides a great transition point, and opportunity to draw people’s attention away from lightly dismissing or laughing at death and the hereafter to, by God’s grace, carefully considering the afterlife and their true condition before their creator.

Some suggested themes, with several verses attached to each, are below.  They should provide good transitions into a gospel presentation, if you choose to give one.  If you are new to Project Ezra, and choose simply to read the scripture, that is fine too, though I would encourage you to bring tracts and Bibles if possible, so you can be prepared for one-on-one follow-up.  Either way,  I would encourage you to spend some time with the text and in prayer, prior to going to the streets, asking God that He will prepare you for sharing the gospel, and for handling his word faithfully and well. 

All for His glory,

What Hell is really like – Not an oasis of sinful pleasure
Many people have a very skewed view of what hell is like.  You have probably heard people say they would rather go to hell, hell will be more fun, all their friends will be there, etc.  Each of these statements shows a radical misunderstanding of what Hell is like.  It is not freedom to sin with impunity.  It is not controlled by the devil and his angels, but was made for their punishment.  And it is a horrible place of pain and suffering.  All these point can be linked back to God’s law, the fact that we have broken that law, and that we rightly deserve the punishment described, and how justice can be satisfied and that punishment averted.
The terrors of hell, and the lake of fire

You will not be in hell enjoying the pleasures of sin with Satan and your buddies.
Satan does not rule hell. It is a punishment for him as it is for us.

Revelation 20:10 – The Devil, the Beast, the False Prophet tormented

Revelation 20:14-15 – Death and Hades (those not in the Lamb’s book of
life) thrown into the lake of fire
            Luke 16 - The rich man begging for one drop of water to soothe his tongue

The Reality of God’s Judgment – God is more than just a God of love
As above, emphasize that God’s wrath is real and deserved.  God’s loving nature is often presented as if it were, for all practical purposes, His only attribute.  Revelation gives much evidence showing this is false.   It shows wrath and final punishment, but it also shows the glorious grace and kindness of God toward those he has redeemed, and the place He has prepared for them.  Be sure to balance them.  We want to bring strong conviction of sin, but not at the expense or to the exclusion of grace.  We want to drive people to Christ, not to despair.
 The great white throne judgment and the Lamb’s book of life – Anyone who’s name is not in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.

Earth and sky fled from the presence of He who sat on the great white throne.

All of us will be judged by God’s perfect holy standard

Revelation 20:13 - All of us will stand before the great white throne and be judged according to what they have done.
            Revelation 21:8 – Have you committed any of these sins?

The lamb’s book of life – Who’s name will be in it? Will your name be in it?
John 1:29 - The lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world

Revelation 5:6 – Jesus described as a lamb, standing as though slain
In the temple, a perfect lamb was sacrificed to cover sin, but only for a time
Hebrews 7: 23-25 - The former priests were many in number, because
they were prevented by death from continuing in office, but he holds
his priesthood permanently, because he continues forever. Consequently, he
is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him,
since he always lives to make intercession for them.
Jesus can take all your sins, permanently. How?

The New Heavens and the New Earth – What God has prepared for those who love Him
The wonders of heaven, and the New Jerusalem

Gold, which many of us would live and die for, is so common and mundane that it is used to pave the streets!

Revelation 21:4 - He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall
be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore,
for the former things have passed away.”

Jesus is coming soon, and bringing His recompense with Him. (Revelation 22:12) Are you ready?

Additional Verses for Halloween
What God says about the occult:
Deuteronomy 18:10-11- There shall not be found among you anyone who
burns his son or his daughter as an offering, anyone who practices
divination or tells fortunes or interprets omens, or a sorcerer or a
charmer or a medium or a necromancer or one who inquires of the dead,
Are you celebrating Halloween by making entertainment of things God hates?

1 comment:

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