VIDEO That Glorious Day – Children of the Light

That Glorious Day

For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. 1 Thessalonians 5:2

When the apostle Paul planted a church in Thessalonica, he had little time to establish the new believers in their faith. According to Acts 17:2, he was driven from town by a persecuting mob after two or three weeks of teaching. But evidently Paul left the Thessalonians with a deep belief in our Lord’s return. They were so eager to learn more about the Second Coming that Paul wrote two letters to them—1 and 2 Thessalonians—answering questions and stoking their anticipation for the Lord’s soon appearing in the clouds of glory.

Those letters are for us too. They are full of information about the Rapture of the Church, the resurrection of the dead, and the return of Christ.

Imagine how excited those early believers were to receive Paul’s letters and soak in his teaching. We, too, should eagerly digest every word in Scripture about our Lord’s promised return, to better anticipate the moment of His coming for us. How differently we’d live if, like the Thessalonians, our hearts were seized with anticipation for that glorious day!

I am waiting for the coming of the Lord who died for me; / Oh, His words have thrilled my spirit, “I will come again for thee.” S. Trevor Francis, hymnist


Children of the Light, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-9 – Pastor Chuck Smith – Topical Bible Study

Advertisements

Your Eulogy

Death is the destiny of everyone; the living should take this to heart.  Ecclesiastes 7:2

My heart is full from attending the funeral of a faithful woman. Her life wasn’t spectacular. She wasn’t known widely outside her church, neighbors, and friends. But she loved Jesus, her seven children, and her twenty-five grandchildren. She laughed easily, served generously, and could hit a softball a long way.

Ecclesiastes says, “It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting” (7:2). “The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning” because there we learn what matters most (7:4). New York Times columnist David Brooks says there are two kinds of virtues: those that look good on a résumé and those you want said at your funeral. Sometimes these overlap, though often they seem to compete. When in doubt, always choose the eulogy virtues.

The woman in the casket didn’t have a résumé, but her children testified that “she rocked Proverbs 31” and its description of a godly woman. She inspired them to love Jesus and care for others. As Paul said, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1), so they challenged us to imitate their mother’s life as she imitated Jesus.

What will be said at your funeral? What do you want said? It’s not too late to develop eulogy virtues. Rest in Jesus. His salvation frees us to live for what matters most.

By Mike Wittmer

Reflect & Pray

Are you living out things that will affect your résumé or your eulogy? How would your life change if you lived each day with your eulogy in mind?

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

Unshakeable Foundation

2 Peter 3:10-13

With each passing year, the instability in the world seems more and more apparent. Natural and man-made catastrophes claim lives; political balance shifts; wealth and status come and go. It all causes us to ask, Is anything unshakeable?

As overwhelming as these things seem, let me give you an even bigger example. In today’s passage, we read that the heavens and earth will be shaken. It will all be destroyed—burned, to be exact. Thankfully, we have the promise that God will create new heavens and a new earth, but in the meantime our world will undergo great turmoil.

Instability can create feelings of insecurity and fear unless we latch onto the truths God has given us. The Bible refers to Jesus as a rock and firm foundation (1 Corinthians 3:10-11; Eph. 2:20). And we know that God is unchangeable and sovereign; nothing can undermine or move Him. His Word is truth, and it will last forever.

As Christians, we know that our eternal relationship with God is secure. We’ve been adopted as His children, and nothing can rob us of this position. What’s more, believers are assured of an eternal home with Him. Though we may at times feel unsettled by our circumstances, we can rejoice when trials bring us humbly to the cross of Jesus, where we will find peace and safety.

What assurance we have as God’s children! We can rest in peace and full confidence, knowing that our hearts are secure in Jesus Christ. As King David said in Psalm 16:8, “I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

Created and Powered by Christ

“And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 3:9)

In the context of this verse, Paul is testifying concerning his divine call to preach the gospel, especially proclaiming God’s great plan to the Gentiles as well as the Jews.

In support of this revolutionary concept, Paul refers to the great fact of creation. All men, and indeed “all things,” had been created by one God. Furthermore, it was by the Lord Jesus Christ that God had created all things. Before the revelation of this mystery, the Gentiles had been “without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). The phrase “without God” (Greek atheos, from which we get the word “atheist”) is used only this once in the New Testament, and it indicates plainly the barrenness of all pagan religions. “But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ” (Ephesians 2:13).

Thus, by Jesus Christ all things were created, and by Jesus Christ “all things” will be gathered “together in one” in the “dispensation of the fullness of times” (Ephesians 1:10). This is all part of the same “mystery of his will,” according to the preceding verse, Ephesians 1:9. In the last chapter, Paul again refers to this now-revealed “mystery” when he urges the Ephesians to pray that he might be able to “make known the mystery of the gospel” (Ephesians 6:19).

Thus, the “gospel of your salvation” (Ephesians 1:13), which we like Paul are commanded to make known, is the glorious news that Jesus Christ is both Creator and Consummator of all things, and that by His work of salvation all who believe, whether Jews or Gentiles, receive eternal salvation. “All things were created by him,” and He has shed His blood “to reconcile all things unto himself” (Colossians 1:16, 20). HMM

In Much Need of Worshipers

But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.

—Acts 6:4

Well, we have great churches and we have beautiful sanctuaries and we join in the chorus, “We have need of nothing.” But there is every indication that we are in need of worshipers.

We have a lot of men willing to sit on our church boards who have no desire for spiritual joy and radiance and who never show up for the church prayer meeting….

They are the fellows who run the church, but you cannot get them to the prayer meeting because they are not worshipers….

It seems to me that it has always been a frightful incongruity that men who do not pray and do not worship are nevertheless actually running many of the churches and ultimately determining the direction they will take.

It hits very close to our own situations, perhaps, but we should confess that in many “good” churches, we let the women do the praying and let the men do the voting.

Because we are not truly worshipers, we spend a lot of time in the churches just spinning our wheels, burning the gasoline, making a noise but not getting anywhere.   WHT016-017

Lord, make the men in our church, especially the leaders, men of prayer and worship. Please don’t allow us to try to lead others where we have not been; don’t let us spin our wheels because we are not worshipers. Amen.

 

Thy comforts delight my soul

In the multitude of my thoughts within me, Thy comforts delight my soul.—Psalm 94:19.

 

Oh, listen then, Most Pitiful!

To Thy poor creature’s heart;

It blesses Thee that Thou art God,

That Thou art what Thou art!

Frederick W. Faber.

 

What the particular thoughts or temptations are that disquiet you, I know not; but, whatsoever they are, look above them, and labor to fix your eye on that infinite goodness, which never faileth them that, by faith, do absolutely rely and rest upon it; and-patiently wait upon Him, who hath pronounced them all, without exception, blessed that do so.

Robert Leighton.

 

Thoughts that disturb and trouble us seldom come from God. It is generally best to put them away, and throw ourself, with increased trust in Him and mistrust of self, at His feet. And never forget, amid whatever may befall you,—dryness, coldness, desolation, and disappointment, consciousness of many faults, and of great weakness, and want of faith,—that where love is, there God is sure to be. He never yet has suffered any soul to fall wholly from Him which, amid all its frailties and falls, clings to Him in love.

H. L. Sidney Lear.

 

It Will Not Be Too Long

“Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.” James 5:8

The last word in the Canticle of love is, “Make haste, my beloved,” and among the last words of the Apocalypse we read, “The Spirit and the Bride say, Come”; to which the heavenly Bridegroom answers, “Surely I come quickly.” Love longs for the glorious appearing of the Lord, and enjoys this sweet promise — “The coming of the Lord draweth nigh.” This stays our minds as to the future. We look out with hope through this window.

This sacred “window of agate” lets in a flood of light upon the present, and puts us into fine condition for immediate work or suffering. Are we tried? Then the nearness of our joy whispers patience. Are we growing weary because we do not see the harvest of our seed-sowing? Again this glorious truth cries to us, “Be patient.” Do our multiplied temptations cause us in the least to waver? Then the assurance, that before long the Lord will be here, preaches to us from this text, “Stablish your hearts.” Be firm, be stable, be constant, “stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.” Soon will you hear the silver trumpets which announce the coming of your King. Be not in the least afraid. Hold the fort, for He is coming; yea, He may appear this very day.