November 11

I realize that Sunday’s lesson was a bit heavy. I wasn’t intending on going in that direction at all, but I do believe God wanted us to see some deep truths about sin and rebellion. The heaviness and gravity of sin is so severe that it permanently separates man from God. It’s a chasm that he cannot bridge no matter how good he is. And, when man turns his back on God, like those at the Tower of Babel did, God turns them over to their sin and wickedness; to their gods. He says in affect, “If you don’t want me, then serve your idols to their death and demise.” In fact, Jesus said this same thing in Matthew 23:36-39 when Jerusalem rejected Him:

  • “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling. Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!’”

And, in less than 40 years Titus Vespatian came and decimated Jerusalem and the Temple, and the nation of Israel once again was dispersed amongst the nations, still rejecting their Savior to this day.

But, remember that there is a happy ending to the story! We the redeemed will be numbered with the eternal worshippers, continually praising and exalting the Lamb of God Who took away the sins of the world! And, as we see above, there will come a time when Israel will seek the Lord once again, and He will bring salvation to them on a wholescale level.

Consider the weight of sin, the burden, the addictive quality of it, and the fact that we were slaves to sin on our way to Hell. Doesn’t that realization change your mindset? It excites me to realize that I was a slave to sin, but am no longer. If anything brings gratitude to my heart it’s knowing how wicked and vile I am inside and that God saved me anyway.

  • Psalm 118:21 I shall give thanks to You, for You have answered me, And You have become my salvation.
  • I. Corinthians 15:57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
  1. Israel was told to sit still in its land, and to be a light in a dark world. They were to live holy, righteous lives. They were to learn the Law, teach it and live it. Yet, they continually rebelled, embraced paganism, and went back to their sinful, “I don’t want God” ways.

We as Christians have been told we have no physical land or inheritance (we are aliens & sojourners on earth, yet citizens of Heaven), and that we are to go throughout the whole world and bring the light into the darkness while we live holy, righteous lives.

    1. Look up Judges 17:6 & 21:25:
      1. What is the repeated theme in these two verses? _______________________________________________
    2. Look up I. Kings 15:11 & Deuteronomy 13:18:
      1. What is the repeated theme in these two verses?
    3. See the contrast? Now, which one is you? ___________________________________________________
  1. The latest thrill nowadays is playing an Escape Room. In fact, there’s one in Hilo if you’re ever interested. The idea is that you are working to solve problems in a set amount of time which will allow you to escape a room (or meet some other goal).
  • Hebrews 2:1-4 For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.
  1. Salvation is free to us but it cost Jesus everything. In Hebrews there was a problem of Jewish Christians wanting to revert back to Judaism. Yet, the writer of Hebrews notes we cannot escapejudgment if we turn our backs on Jesus and don’t fully embrace salvation.
  2. Hence, we cannot be “business as usual” about our lives. Look each person that you walk by tomorrow in the eyes, and say within yourself, “You’re going to Hell”… “You’re going to Hell”. Now, of course you don’t know that each person is actually lost, but statistically, the vast majority you see each day are. It’s like what Spurgeon said:
  • “If God would have painted a yellow stripe on the backs of the elect, I would go around lifting shirts. But since he didn’t, I must preach “whosoever will”; and when “whosoever” believes, I know he is one of the elect.”
    1. Are you living a life that imitates Christ, exalts Him, and serves as a light in a very dark world? ______________________________________________
      1. If you have areas that need adjusting, what are they? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    2. Are you looking for opportunities to share Jesus with the lost? __________________________________________
  • Do you have Gospel tracts on hand, ready to go for when you are at a restaurant, or talking with someone? _______________________________________________
    1. Case in point: I kicked myself that I didn’t pack any tracts this last week when I went to Oahu. We ate at the Hard Rock Café where I would have loved to have left a tract for the waitress.
    2. If you need some, let us know and we’ll get them for you!
  1. Do you see each person as a lost person that needs Jesus, or do you ignore most people, maybe just give a cursory examination of how they look, or judge them, or just don’t really think about it? ______________________________________________________________________________________________
    1. Do you really care? __________________________
  2. I know I’ve been “harping” on evangelizing recently, but if there’s anything we must be doing, it’s telling the lost about Jesus. We will not see any change to our nation, to our community, or to our church until what’s important to God becomes important to us.
    1. Pray now for a heart for the lost, to see them as God sees them, and to boldly proclaim the truth.
    2. Ask God to forgive you for any apathy or carelessness you may have had with evangelism.
    3. Pray for the 8,000+ people in Waikoloa, the vast majority of whom are lost and who need salvation.

Folks, this is written to me as well. As I studied for Genesis 10-11, I never before saw the depth of darkness that the Tower of Babel was pointing to, and how far man’s rebellion went. God turned His back on humanity, took His name off of them, and then chose instead to make a small nation that would represent His name through Abram. But, there was no Gospel witness throughout the world for almost 3,000 years! God’s judgment was that severe. However, you and I are living in an age of grace, and He has not only reached unto the Gentiles to save them, but He has commissioned His followers (that’s you and me) to go forth as His army, unafraid to fight spiritually against the foes, and to move forward with His banner proclaiming, “Salvation belongs to the Lord! Repent for the Kingdom is at hand!” Let us do so today, and conquer Satan’s strongholds in the name of Jesus by the power of His glorious, life changing Gospel!