Friday, December 28, 2012

Christ's First and Second Coming - Revelation 19

Hello Project Ezra!  I pray that your Christmas outreach time was fruitful and encouraging.  I am hoping we will have enough pictures and stories to put together an outreach update as an encouragement to others.  So, if you have not shared with the group yet, please consider doing so.  Our local team headed out several times last weekend at Christmas in the Park here in San Jose.  It was cold and wet, but there were still many thousands of people out enjoying themselves with family and friends, and we had many opportunities to share the good news, both through open-air preaching and through one-on-one conversations.  There is very likely a similar opportunity in your area  between now and New Years, so keep your eyes and ears open, and be sure to share your experiences on the event wall on Facebook if you can.

This week I wanted to suggest a chapter that was a counterpoint to the Christmas story that we read last week.  The Christmas story is wonderful, but people can get so lost in the warm feelings from pictures of a baby in the manger that they forget that is only part of the story.  Jesus Christ was born, died, and rose again for our salvation, and there has never been a greater gift or greater sacrifice since the world began.  But he will also be coming back, and when He does those who have rejected Him will receive the just punishment that they deserve, that truly we all deserve.  Though no one knows the day or the hours, His second coming is imminent, and we need to be warning people of it.  And whether Christ comes back today or a thousand years from now, every one of us will stand before Him one day.  Many people die at times and in circumstances that they don’t expect, and none of us is promised tomorrow.  That truth should, by God’s grace, give us a sense of urgency to share His truth, and should give those who don’t know Him a greater desire to hear His word and know His truth.

I’ll be praying for you all as you go our this weekend, and would appreciate your prayers as well.  Our team members (different people different days) will be out Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  Please pray that we will be faithful to God’s truth and that His Spirit will work powerfully to convict and draw people to Himself.  God bless.

All for His glory,



Last week many of us celebrated the coming of the Messiah, God the son

We celebrated the love and mercy of the creator of the universe, who humbled Himself, took on human flesh, and died for the sake of His children

We celebrated the greatest gift, and greatest sacrifice, the world has ever seen. 

We have probably all heard the Christmas story at one time or another.  Some believe it, and some don't

But this is only part of the story of the Messiah.

Jesus Christ, the baby born in a manger, born to die on a cross for sin, will be coming again

The first time He came so that all who trust in Him should be saved.

The second time He will come to take them home, and to bring justice on those who are in rebellion against Him.

Those who are His will rejoice and exult, and give Him glory

Those who are not He will make war on, and they will be trodden under His feet.

Which of these two are you?  Are you a child of God, or are you His enemy?

If you reject the true God of the Bible in favor of another so-called god, or for an image of Him you have created in your own image, you are not His child, but His enemy
Idolatry is condemned throughout God’s word, including in His Ten Commandments

My glory I will not give to another.  (Isaiah 48:11 ESV)

If you lie to others, believing your dishonesty is a small thing that God will pass over, you only lie to yourself, and again prove yourself His enemy
Lying lips are an abomination to the LORD, but those who act faithfully are his delight.  (Proverbs 12:22 ESV

If you misuse His name, as a curse word or expression of disgust, or if you treat His holiness and glory lightly, then you are a blasphemer, and are once again His enemy
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.  (Exodus 20:7 ESV)


Many will treat God’s commands lightly, since everyone sins, and no one is perfect

Indeed we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.  I know I have

But that does not give anyone the right to willfully chose sin, and to continue living in it
If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.  (1 John 1:6 ESV)

For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.  (Hebrews 10:26-27 ESV)

There are many who now name Christ’s name who will find themselves His enemy at the second coming.
“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.  (Matthew 7:13-14 ESV)

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’  (Matthew 7:21-23 ESV)

Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?”  (Revelation 6:15-17 ESV)

For we know him who said, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.  (Hebrews 10:30-31 ESV)

But even though we are told that we are by nature children of wrath, there is a remedy.

The same Jesus who will come to judge the living and the dead, and who will rule the nations with a rod of iron also shed His own blood so that men could be redeemed.

2000 years ago Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man and without sin, came to earth, lived a perfect life we could never live, and then died a perfect death as payment for sin.
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit  (1 Peter 3:18 ESV)

All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.   (Romans 3:23-25 ESV)

Through Christ’s death on the cross sin is paid for, and those who trust in Him are set free.

But Jesus did not only die for sin.  He rose again, and now sits at God’s right hand, where He will speak in defense of those who have repented and trusted in Him, and in Him alone
            No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.  (Luke 13:3 ESV)
Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out (Acts 3:19 ESV)

And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12 ESV)

So today, will you trust in Him, or continue in your rebellion against Him?

God tells us that He is not slow in keeping His promises, but is patient, not wanting any of His children to perish, but all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9)

It could be that the only reason He has allowed you to live, and to be here today, is so that you would hear this message, and have this time to repent and trust in Him

So do not presume on His patience.  Turn and trust Him today!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting Project Ezra. Your comments are welcome. Any comments containing profanity, links to sites that I am either unfamiliar or do not approve, blasphemy in any form, or ad hominem attacks will not be posted on the blog.