Monday, December 26, 2011


The Three Stooges?

I contend that the 3 wise men were not so wise.

Matthew 2: Wise Men from the East
1    Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem,
2    saying, "Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him."
3    When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
4    And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.
5    So they said to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet:
6    ' But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, Are not the least among the rulers of Judah; For out of you shall come a Ruler Who will shepherd My people Israel.' "
7    Then Herod, when he had secretly called the wise men, determined from them what time the star appeared.
8    And he sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and search carefully for the young Child, and when you have found Him, bring back word to me, that I may come and worship Him also."
9    When they heard the king, they departed; and behold, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came and stood over where the young Child was.
10    When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy.
11    And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
12    Then, being divinely warned in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed for their own country another way.


16    Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had determined from the wise men.
17    Then was fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying:
18    " A voice was heard in Ramah, Lamentation, weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, Refusing to be comforted, Because they are no more."

Please Note… They were late!!  Possibly up to 2 years late.

Now, being from the region of Babylon, where Daniel had prophesied of the birth of Christ, they could have figured the year of the birth of the Lord.

Daniel 9:21    yes, while I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reached me about the time of the evening offering.22    And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, "O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to understand.23    At the beginning of your supplications the command went out, and I have come to tell you, for you are greatly beloved; therefore consider the matter, and understand the vision:24     " Seventy weeks are determined For your people and for your holy city, To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up vision and prophecy, And to anoint the Most Holy.25     " Know therefore and understand, That from the going forth of the command To restore and build Jerusalem Until Messiah the Prince, There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; The street shall be built again, and the wall, Even in troublesome times.26     " And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; And the people of the prince who is to come Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.

And yet, they were still 2 years late.

Well I guess this tells us that its not too late for you to come to Jesus!  You may have been as silly as stooge in delaying coming to Christ, but its not too late for you to come to Christ right now.  You can come to Him and find Him as your Saviour and redeemer.  You can come to Him and have the forgiveness of all your sins past present and future. You would be really silly to put it off any longer though wouldn’t you! 

The Good News is that even if you are late you can still come to Jesus.  But come now before its too late!

Please Note.. They were Odd Folks.

These wise men were from Persia, Iran! They weren’t Jews.  They were stargazers!  They may have been into horoscopes!  well .. guess what.. Many odd people have come to Jesus.  the Good news is that even if you are odd you can still come  to Jesus! He wont reject you!  “Whoever comes to me I will not cast them out!” (John 6:39) 

And if you are not sure of this, just take a look around you.  There are plenty of odd people in this church!  The good news is that if you are odd you can still come to Jesus.

Please Note: They went to the wrong person.  They went to Herod.  You may have gone to the wrong person.  You may have gone to worship Mary.  What a waste. Its Jesus who is the Saviour.  You may have gone to a church!  Church folk won’t save you.  Sometimes we make real mistakes in finding our way to Jesus. What really matters is that you come to Jesus!

Matthew 1:21    And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins." 22    So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: 23    "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel," which is translated, "God with us."

Only in Jesus is there saving from sin, forgiveness for our sins. Only in Jesus can God be with us, for us, and even indwell us!

The Good News is that whatever mistakes you make in coming to Jesus, you should still come to Jesus!  He will receive you and give you eternal life.

John 3: 16    For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
17    For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
18    "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
19    And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
20    For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.
21    But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

Saturday, December 10, 2011


Mark 13 Watching And Working

Mark 13 Watching And Working

24 "But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light;

25 the stars of heaven will fall, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

26 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.

27 And then He will send His angels, and gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest part of earth to the farthest part of heaven.

28 "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near.

29 So you also, when you see these things happening, know that it is near --- at the doors!

30 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.

31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.

32 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

33 Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is.

34 It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch.

35 Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming --- in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning ---

36 lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping.

37 And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!"

A zealous college student was doing summer mission work where they don’t use the familiar religious terms we do. He went out to share his faith in a neighborhood and saw an old man sitting on his front porch. He walked up and said, “Excuse me, sir, but are you a Christian?” The man said, “No, we’re the Smiths. The Christians live two doors down the street.” The kid continued, “You don’t understand. I mean, are you lost?” The man said, “No, sonny, I’m not lost. I’ve been living right here for 25 years.” Getting a little frustrated, the student pressed on, “So let me ask you, are you ready for the Judgment Day?” The man asked, “When’s it going to be?” The kid said, “Well, it could be today, or it could be tomorrow.” The old man replied, “Well, don’t tell my wife; because she’ll want to go both days!” When it comes to end times and the judgment day, a lot of people are confused.

What is this world coming to? People both religious and secular sense the fact that our world is changing rapidly. Even the secularists have fearful expectations. People who have no allegiance to the Scripture realize the potential for the end of the world, as we know it. Potential nuclear war, a nuclear accident, energy crises, ecological disasters, killer viruses, earthquakes, droughts, the depleting ozone layer or even a cosmic collision are events we are being challenged with.

1. We Should WATCH!

Because The date is UNKNOWN

“No one knows about that day or hour…only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36) I should say it is unknown to US. Only the Father knows. And Noah didn’t know the day when the flood would come, only God knew the day.

Because The return will be UNANNOUNCED

Actually, it won’t be announced BEFORE it happens, but it will certainly be announced AFTER it happens. Newspapers have a certain large typeface reserved for only the most important headlines. Do you know what it’s called? Second Coming type. Even journalists realize the return of Jesus will be the biggest news event in history. But there will be no prior announcement. He will come like a thief in the night. The Bible says, “You know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night…But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief.” (1 Thessalonians 5:2, 4) In the New Testament, Christ's second coming is often likened to the coming of a thief (Luke 12:35-40; 1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Pet. 3:10; Rev. 3:3; and 16:15). That's not because Christ is like a thief; it's because He will come suddenly and unexpectedly. And when a thief breaks into a home, he generally takes everything. That's what will happen when Christ returns. He will burn everything that cannot stand the test of judgment.

A good thief never announces when he’s coming. (“Good thief” is an oxymoron.) In fact the

M.O. of a thief is to slip in and slip out without being detected. Now when some people hear that Jesus will return like a thief in the night, they are confused, because they read passages where it says Jesus will come in great majesty and every eye will see Him. Which one is it? Yes. When Jesus comes to Rapture the church, it will be sudden and secretive, like a thief in the night. It will happen in the twinkling of an eye. But after the seven years of Tribulation, Jesus will return as the leader of a mighty army and every eye will see Him, so both of those pictures are correct.

The Lord is coming unexpectedly. He will come suddenly at a time when no one will be watching for Him. It's hard to imagine that because you would think that after the rapture, people would anticipate Christ's return. But sin blinds people. "The mystery of iniquity" (2 Thess. 2:7) will reach its apex in the end times. People will try to explain away the signs preceding Christ's coming. They will become very hostile toward God. Some people who initially said, "Christ will come soon" will eventually change their mind and say, "He isn't coming." It's possible that once the signs are over with, things will settle into some modicum of normality long enough for people to think nothing else will happen. And that's when Christ will come--when people least expect Him. However it happens, people won't be ready for the moment.

This is a true story; you can Google it. In the spring of 1980, the blue skies above Oregon were obscured by steam rising from Mt. Saint Helens. Geologists warned an eruption was imminent and residents living near the area were ordered to evacuate. State troopers and forest rangers entered the area with loudspeakers blaring, “Danger! Evacuate the area immediately.” Flashing road signs were erected that said, “Warning, Warning, Warning. Evacuate immediately.” An 83- year-old man named Harry Truman (no relation to the President) operated a lodge at Spirit Lake only five miles from Mt. St. Helens. He laughed at the warnings. Officials argued with him to leave, but when he stubbornly refused, he was granted permission to stay. He said, “Nobody knows more about this mountain than old Harry—and it wouldn’t dare blow up on me.”

On the morning of May 18, 1980 Harry woke, and probably followed his habit of feeding his 16 cats, then fixing breakfast for himself. At 8:13 a.m. Mt. St. Helens exploded with the force of a 23-megaton nuclear bomb. The top 1,500 feet of the mountain disappeared. The sound of the eruption was heard 600 miles away. The eruption heated the air to 600 degrees. Old Harry never heard a thing because a shock wave of energy traveling faster than the speed of sound slammed outward from the volcano. It was followed by a fifty-foot tall wave of mud and dirt that flattened everything within 150 square miles. It destroyed over half a million trees. The eruption was followed by a cloud of ash that covered everything to a depth of fifty feet. They never found a trace of Harry, his cats, or his cabin. I wonder what went through old Harry’s mind in that millisecond that he had gambled with his life and lost. He had heard the warnings, but he did not heed them.

All that remains from Harry’s life is a testimony to his refusal to heed the warnings. Fifty feet above the remaining molecules of Harry’s incinerated remains, there is a crooked path named Harry’s Trail. My advice to you: Don’t follow Harry’s trail. The Bible says at any moment, the Lord Jesus could return in a flash, in a twinkling of an eye. God has placed warning signs all along the road. Warning! Repent immediately. This message is just another warning. For those of us who have heeded His warning, and put our faith in Jesus, we will escape His judgment against sin. But some people like Old Harry, just laugh at the Bible and refuse to heed God’s Warning.

Because His Coming Will Be Unrivalled

24 "But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light;

25 the stars of heaven will fall, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

There have been plenty of rapture jokes lately. Unbelievers have been making fun of all this talk about the rapture. They say, “You Christians have been talking about the second coming of Jesus for thousands of years.” Well God even predicted that. Listen to these words from 2 Peter 3: “In the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, ‘Where is this “coming” he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation’…But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:3-4, 8-9)

Richard Baxter: "My knowledge of that life is small, The eye of faith is dim, But it's enough that Christ knows all, And I shall be with Him."

There is an old legend of a swan and a crane. A beautiful swan alighted by the banks of the water in which a crane was wading about seeking snails. For a few moments the crane viewed the swan in stupid wonder and then inquired: "Where do you come from?" "I come from heaven!" replied the swan. "And where is heaven?" asked the crane. "Heaven!" said the swan, "Heaven! Have you never heard of heaven?" And the beautiful bird went on to describe the grandeur of the Eternal City. She told of streets of gold, and the gates and walls made of precious stones; of the river of life, pure as crystal, upon whose banks is the tree whose leaves shall be for the healing of the nations. In eloquent terms the swan sought to describe the hosts who live in the other world, but without arousing the slightest interest on the part of the crane. Finally the crane asked: "Are there any snails there?" "Snails!" repeated the swan; "No! Of course there are not." "Then," said the crane, as it continued its search along the slimy banks of the pool, "You can have your heaven. I want snails!"

Because The Result Will Be Unavoidable

For those who are caught up in the trivial things of this life, who refuse to surrender to Christ, their future is judgment.

26 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.

27 And then He will send His angels, and gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest part of earth to the farthest part of heaven.

2. We Should WORK!

There is no question about whether or not Christ is going to come. The only remaining question is, “Will I be ready when Jesus returns?” And only you can answer that question. Jesus said, “So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” (Matthew 24:44)

Let me tell you two ways to make sure you’re prepared for the return of Jesus.

Decide today to trust Christ and invite Him into your heart!

Have you ever turned from your sins and placed your faith in Jesus? That’s the only way to know for certain you’ll be ready to meet Jesus. Becoming a Christian isn’t hard—it’s as easy as opening the door of your heart. Jesus says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”

(Revelation 3:20) The door is the door of your heart. Jesus isn’t going to barge into your life.

He’s a gentleman. He is knocking and tenderly calling your name. It is God’s Will for you to be saved, but He won’t override your will. You have a choice in the matter.

Done that? Then live in a way so you can meet Him with confidence

We Should Work!

If you’re already trusted Jesus you may think you’re ready. But you may not be as ready and you need to be. There’s a powerful verse in 1 John 2:28 which talks about being ready for the return of Jesus. It says, “And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming.” (1 John 2:28) Do you see there are two possibilities of how a Christian may meet the Lord? We may be ashamed or we may have confidence.


Because We Won’t Be ASHAMED

Is there anything you do or say or think that if the Lord Jesus Christ came back at that moment you might be ashamed? Imagine you’re in the process of uttering that profane word you sometimes say, and in that moment the Lord returns. Or imagine you’re involved in some activity you know is wrong. That might cause shame, don’t you think? What about some unfinished business for the Lord? God has led you to share your faith with a lost person, or He’s led you to serve in some ministry, but you’ve been putting it off. Suddenly you’re face to face with the Lord—and it’s too late. “I’m sorry Lord. I’m ashamed I didn’t follow through on what you led me to do.”

But you can face the Lord with confidence if you understand what John wrote. He said,

“Continue in Him.” In other words, daily surrender your life to the Lordship of Christ. Don’t fall away, don’t give up. Continue to walk daily with the Lord. Keep on praying, keep on serving, keep on feeding on His Word, keep on sharing your faith and you can meet Him with the kind of confidence John had that allowed him to say, “Even so, Lord Jesus, come quickly!


Because We Won’t Be INCOMPLETE

Work – In verse 34, Jesus describes Himself as a house owner who leaves his business in the hands of his servants. This man assigns each of his servants a specific task and then he takes his journey. The servants do not know when their master will return, so they are encouraged work at their tasks diligently, so that they will not be found shirking their duties when their master comes back.

        When Jesus saved us, He saved us to go to work for Him, Eph. 2:10; James 2:18. When He saved us, He gave each of us a specific assignment, 1 Cor. 12:7, 11. In other words, Jesus gave you a job to do and He gave me a job to do too. Our duty to Him is to faithfully do those things He has called us to do until He comes for us.

        In light of that truth, there are a few questions we need to ask and answer for ourselves.

·         Do you know what the Lord wants you to do?

·         Are you doing what He wants you to do?

The church is made up of just two kinds o folk No matter how closely you view it

The ones who will talk about what should be done

And those who get in and who do it!

John Wesley was once asked how he would spend his last day if he knew he were to die that night; he replied “

I would spend it exactly as I will spend it today…I would preach in Gloucester toniht, get up early and preach in Tewkesbury then go to the Martins house in the evening a pray with them as they expect me to do, retire placing myself in the father’s care and wake up in heaven.”



30 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. 32 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

This day is coming as assuredly as the Lord’s Word is true, as assuredly as the Lord is true. And the Lord wants you to live a life of certainty about that fact.  this is what we call the Christian Hope.

And the christian hope has an effect upon us.

1 John 3:3 And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.

Titus 2:11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, 12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, 13  waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14  who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

Because the Lord Will Approve Your Work

And the Lord here in Luke chapter 12 is also concerned in warning people about His Second Coming. He says, "Let your loins be girded about and your lamps burning, and you yourselves like men that wait for their lord when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks you may open unto him immediately." I mean, be ready so that when he comes back, everything is as it ought to be. "Blessed are those servants whom the Lord when He comes shall find watching. Verily I say unto you, you shall...that He shall gird himself and make them to sit down to eat and will come forth and serve them. vv. 35-37.

When the Lord comes back, if you've been faithful, He will sit you down to eat and serve you. The faithful Christian may not know when He's coming, but he's ready.

Here Christ gives a parable. The lord represents God, and the servant represents every man and woman in the world. We have all been given a great responsibility. It's as if the Lord said, "Manage everything I gave you in creating you in My image--your intellect, will, emotions, and talents-- and all the other good things I have given you. Use them all for serving Me." We are like the servant who is told to manage all the goods in a house and to dispense food to everyone at the right time and place.

Everything we have was granted to us by God. We are accountable for how we manage all those things. Hell will be populated not only by the devil and his angels, but also by those who wasted the privileges God gave them. And those who misuse what God has given them will be condemned, as was the man who embezzled the king's money in Matthew 18.

"Blessed is that servant, whom his lord, when he cometh, shall find so doing."

When the Lord returns, He will bless the servants who are doing what He wanted them to do. Those who are obedient give evidence of being believers. Doing the will of God is always the mark of true salvation. True Christians will be found making the most of their stewardship.

"Verily I say unto you that he shall make him ruler over all his goods."

When the Lord returns, He will allow His faithful servants to manage over everything He possesses. Have you ever wondered what we will be doing in the millennial kingdom and in eternity? We will sit with Christ on His throne and rule over everything He possesses (Rev. 3:21). So what a person does during his short life on earth will determine whether he will rule in eternity with Christ or be dominated by the demons in hell. The person who is proven faithful to God will be rewarded.

Jesus will come for you in one of two ways. Either you’ll meet Him in death, or He will return before your death. So you need to be prepared. Your death may happen suddenly or slowly, you don’t know. But for sure, His return will be sudden and surprising.

"There is a fable which tells of three apprentice devils who were coming to this earth to finish their apprenticeship. They were talking to Satan, the chief of the devils, about their plans to tempt and ruin men. The first said, `I will tell them there is no God.' Satan said, `That will not delude many, for they know there is a God.' The second said, `I will tell men there is no hell.' Satan answered, `You will deceive no one that way; men know even now that there is a hell for sin.' The third said, `I will tell men there is no hurry.' `Go,' said Satan, `and you will ruin them by the thousand'" (Barclay, W. The Gospel of Matthew, vol. 2 [Philadelphia: Westminster, 1975], p. 317).

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