COMMITTED to train men and women
to have minds for the Lord Jesus,
hearts for the truth, and
hands that are skilled to the task.

"Gospel" Tagged Sermons

IS IT THE TIME OF THE END?

John Lennox “Against the Flow”
“After an introductory paragraph that brings us to the death of Alexander the Great and the division of his kingdom among his four generals, the future is divided up into four movements:
Daniel 11:5-19
Daniel 11:20-28
Daniel 11:29-35
Daniel 11:36-12:3

According to www.Britannica.com
“Zeus, in ancient Greek religion, chief deity of the pantheon, a sky and weather god who was identical with the Roman god Jupiter.
As ruler of heaven Zeus led the gods to victory against the GIANTS (offspring of Gaea, Greek personification of the Earth as a goddess) and successfully crushed several revolts against him by his fellow gods.
According to the Greek poet Homer, heaven was located on the summit of Olympus, the highest mountain in Greece and the logical home for a weather god. The other members of the pantheon resided there with Zeus and were subject to his will.
From his exalted position atop Mount Olympus Zeus was thought to omnisciently observe the affair of men, seeing everything, governing all, and rewarding good conduct and punishing evil. Besides dispensing justice – he had a strong connection with his daughter Dike (Justice) – Zeus was the protector of cities, the home, property, strangers, guests, and supplicants.” Encyclopedia Britannica

According to the Talmud, one of Judaism’s most central texts, Judah Maccabee and the other Jews who took part in the rededication of the Second Temple witnessed what they believed to be a miracle. Even though there was only enough untainted olive oil to keep the menorah’s candles burning for a single day, the flames continued flickering for eight nights, leaving them time to find a fresh supply.
This wondrous event inspired the Jewish sages to proclaim a yearly eight-day festival.
The story of Hannukah does not a appear in the Torah because the events that inspired the holiday occurred after it was written. It is, however, mentioned in the New Testament, in which Jesus attends a ‘FEAST OF DEDICATION’

Did you know that on October 3, 1863 President Abraham Lincoln declared THANKSGIVING a NATIONAL HOLIDAY to be the last Thursday in November, which that particular year overlapped with one of Hanukkah’s eight days of celebration?

John Lennox
“Even though Antiochus’s oppression of the Jews would not usher in the time of the end, Daniel predicted that the people of Israel would experience persecution, war, captivity, and death over an unspecified period, UNTIL THE TIME OF THE END. (The nightmare of the Holocaust was yet to come.) There is no expectation here of the kind of deliverance that Daniel and his friends experienced in the earlier part of his book.”
“Throughout the centuries of Christian history there has been a constant danger of people failing to heed Christ’s warning. They thought that their time was the end time; a mistake that often led to behavior which discredited the Christian message. During the Second World War, for instance, there were those who thought the activity of Hitler and Mussolini was evidence that the end times had come. BUT THEY WERE WRONG.
In this final section of his book it should not surprise us, therefore, that Daniel issues a similar warning to those who would live four centuries after him. The angelic messenger told Daniel that some of his people would misread not only the time of Antiochus but other historical situations also and think the end had come. THAT WOULD SOMETIMES LEAD THEM TO DISASTER. For instance, some would even make a futile attempt TO BRING IN GOD’S KINGDOM BY FORCE OF ARMS.”
“If an event in history is a thought model or prototype of the end time, there will inevitably be a danger of confusing the PROTOTYPE with the event that it foreshadows. The former Chief Rabbi of the UK, Lord Sacks, in his analysis of why religion goes wrong, writes:
‘SOMETIMES IT IS BECAUSE RELIGIOUS PEOPLE ATTEMPT TO BRING ABOUT THE END OF TIME IN THE MIDST OF TIME.’
As examples of attempting to bring the end of time within time, Lord Sacks cites the two major rebellions against Rome – AD 66 and AD 132 – that led to the destruction of the temple, the razing of Jerusalem, and 58,000 deaths. He comments: ‘Prior to the Holocaust, it was the greatest catastrophe in Jewish history.” John Lennox

What does history tell us?
“The reward of the historian is to locate patterns that recur over time and to discover the natural rhythms of social experience.
In fact, at the core of modern history lies this remarkable pattern: Over the past five centuries, Anglo-American society has entered a new era – a new TURNING – every two decades or so. At the start of each turning, people change how they feel about themselves, the culture, the nation, and the future. Turnings come in cycles of four. Each cycle, a unit of time the ancients called the saeculum. Together, the four turnings of the saeculum comprise history’s seasonal rhythm of growth, maturation, entropy, and destruction. Each turning comes with its own identifiable mood. Always, these mood shifts catch people by surprise.”
“The 1760s were followed by the American Revolution, the 1850s by Civil War, the 1920 by the Great Depression and World War II. All these Unraveling eras were followed by bone-jarring Crisis so monumental that, by their end, American society emerged in a wholly new form.
Each time, the change came with scant warning. As late as December 1773, November 1859, and October 1929, the American people had no idea how close it was. Then sudden sparks (the Boston Tea Party, John Brown’s raid and execution, Black Tuesday) transformed the public mood, swiftly and permanently. Over the next two decades or so, society convulsed.
Emergencies required massive sacrifices from a citizenry that responded by putting community ahead of self. Leaders led, and people trusted them. As a new social contract was created, people overcame challenges once thought insurmountable – and used the Crisis to elevate themselves and their nation to a higher plane of civilization.
In the 1790, they triumphantly created the modern world’s first democratic republic. In the late 1860, wounded but reunited, they forged a genuine nation extending new guarantees of liberty and equality. In the 1940, they constructed the most Promethean superpower ever seen.
The fourth turning is history’s great discontinuity. It ends one epoch and begins another.” “The Fourth Turning” William Strauss and Neil Howe

CURSED OF FREE?

In that little book you find Spurgeon explain the difference between a “gold leaf” Christians and a “SOLID GOLD” Christian. From the outside you cannot seen the difference.
“It is a lamentable fact that many who are called Christians, because they belong to a Christian nation, are a grievous dishonor to the name of Christ. The heathen, judging of Christianity by them, have often been heard to say, “We had better remain as we are than become as drunken, or swear as profanely, or act as viciously as these so-called Christian people do.”
I have nothing to do now with merely nominal Christianity. Do what you like with it.
Neither do I at all identify a man in Christ with one who is profoundly conversant with all the externals of the Christian religion, and who gives himself up devotedly to them, but never looks into the center – into the heart and kernel – of the matter.
I am also bound to confess that there are members of evangelical churches, not devotees of ceremonialism, but advocates for the bares simplicity of worship, who make a very high profession of being real Christians, and talk a great deal about vital godliness, who, nevertheless, are not men in Christ.
The church of Christ has been plagued by hypocrites from the first day even until now. There was a Judas among the apostles themselves. Are you surprised at this? I confess I am not.
Because Christianity is in itself so valuable, therefore there are many worthless imitations. Men counterfeit a sovereign because it is worth having; if it ever should become worthless the trade of the counterfeiter would be gone; and it is because the possession of true godliness is so valuable at thing that there are so many who pretend to have it who know nothing about it.
I distrust full often those who are so loud in their professions. I know that the cart which rings the loudest bell when it goes through the street only carries dust; but I never hear a bell rung when they are carrying diamonds or bullion through the city.
The best actions which are wrought in this world are for the most part done in secret by those who desire no eye to observe them except the eye of the Almighty God. But some, under the pretense of doing that, are rather standing up for themselves than for Christ, and are not quite so anxious to cry, “Behold the Lamb of God”, as to say, “Come, see my zeal for the Lord of hosts! Admire me; and see what a wonderful honor I am to the religion of Jesus Christ.”
Now I give up these religious pretenders to the world’s utmost scorn. I have nothing to say in their defense, but very much by way of disgust at their untruthfulness.” Charles H. Spurgeon

Chuck Swindoll in his commentary on Galatians writes:
Paul’s point, then, is that all people who fail to keep the Law in its entirety live under the shadow of God’s impending judgment. How different this is from the Judaizers’ deceptive “pick and choose” approach to the Law! They thought their pursuit of certain aspects of the Law would earn God’s favor. That teaching, however, is an affront to His grace and mercy, only provoking His judgment.”

Dr. Michael Heiser in his book “What does God want?” writes:
…The sad truth is that many genuine Christians live tormented defeated lives, not because of the Gospel, but because of the way THEIR GUILT has distorted the clarity of the Gospel.
.Working hard to make someone else think you have value requires you to focus on yourself. You can’t be focused on someone else when the goal is to make another person think you are worthy of their attention or love.
We want to feel good about ourselves (i.e., we legitimately deserved something, so we aren’t taking what doesn’t belong to us). We also want others to feel that way about us, too (i.e., we want others to give us something because of the way we make them feel about us).
The Gospel strips this away and casts it aside. It exposes us, demanding naked humility. It insists the focus be entirely on God and Jesus. That’s why it’s a hard pill to swallow for so many. It doesn’t let us take any credit.
What it comes down to is that the gospel cares NOTHING about what you do, but cares EVERYTHING about who you already are.”

Dr. Michael Heiser gives us a summary on page 63 of his book
“Salvation is NOT about performance. It never was, never will be, and never can be. We can do nothing to put ourselves at the level of God, to make ourselves fit for his presence. We lack God’s perfect nature. We are like God, created to image him, but be definition we are LESS THAN GOD, and God knows it. That’s why his solution was Jesus, NOT YOU.

You Are Enlisted

As one man once said:
“I am a soldier. I am not a baby. I do not need to be pampered, petted, primed up, pumped up, picked up, or pepped up. I am a soldier. No one has to call me, remind me, write me, visit me, entice me or lure me. I am a soldier. I am not a wimp. I am in place, saluting my King, obeying His orders, praising His name and building His kingdom. No one has to send me flowers, gifts, food, cards or candy, or give me handouts. I do not need to be cuddled, cradled, cared for or catered to. I am committed. I cannot have my feelings hurt bad enough to turn me around. I cannot be discouraged enough to turn me aside. I cannot lose enough to cause me to quit.
When Jesus called me into this army, I had nothing. If I end up with nothing, I will still come out ahead. I will win. My God has and will continue to supply all my need. I am more than a conqueror. I will always triumph. I can do all things through Christ. The devil cannot defeat me. People cannot disillusion me. Weather cannot weary me. Sickness cannot stop me. Battles cannot beat me. Money cannot buy me. Governments cannot silence me, and hell cannot handle me. I am a soldier. Even death cannot destroy me. For when my commander calls me from His battlefield, He will promote me to captain and then allow me to rule with Him. I am a soldier in the army, and I’m marching claiming victory. I will not give up. I will not turn around. I am a soldier, marching heaven-bound. Here I stand!” Unknown Author
You say; well I did not sign up as a soldier, all I wanted is to get to heaven. Well, you will not get there without a war. Jesus came into this world to win that war once and for all. But not everyone knows about it. WHY? We fight the greatest war that has ever been fought. This war started long before God created Adam and Eve. It started in heaven, and eventually came to this earth. And this war is not over until all His enemies are made His footstool.

The Seven Divine Proclamations

This chapter is a the chain-link that connects the events of the middle of the tribulation, the details we found in Revelation 10-13, and the events of the second half of the tribulation period, the details we will find in chapter 15-16.
The main theme was the COUNTERFEIT TRINITY that is coming unto the world stage with the purpose to usurp God’s authority and to persecute and kill those who refuse to bow down to this NEW WORLD RELIGION. It will be the born-again believers, the true followers of Jesus Christ that will refuse to worship the image of the beast and the antichrist.
Revelation 14:9-12 deals with the people who take the mark of the beast. None of those who do so have a second chance to receive salvation from the Lord. God already gave them the chances they needed. They had the 144,000 Jewish evangelist preaching the gospel during the first half of the Tribulation period and then the angel proclaimed it the everlasting Gospel one more time. This was the last chance.
IN OTHER WORDS, THE OPPORTUNITY OF SALVATION WILL BE AVAILABLE TO ALL AS LONG AS THEY ARE WITHOUT THE MARK OF THE BEAST. Once the mark is taken, signifying the acceptance of the Antichrist AS THE ONE TRUE GOD, they reached the point of no return.

A Glimpse of Hope

There are times when troubles just seem to pile up. It is during those times that we need some relief. We need to know that everything will turn out all right. In other words, no matter how spiritual, how mature, how long we have been saved, we need ASSURANCE that a brighter day is coming.
When we hear what is going on in our world right now, we can easily be overwhelmed by all the bad news that which are relentlessly coming our way every day. It is during those days that IT IS VERY EASY TO LOSE THE SIGHT OF THE PROMISES OF VICTORY GOD HAS GIVEN US AND ASSURED US IN HIS BOOK, THE BIBLE.
Throughout the book of Revelation, John heard many voices, voices from individual angels, voices from the four living creatures, the voices from the 24 elders before the throne of God, the voices of the innumerable angelic beings, the voices of the 7 angels who hold the seven trumpets. Now finally, here in chapter 14, John hears the voice of Jesus once again. A glimpse of hope.