Daily Devotional for Wednesday November 13, 2013
Choose Who You Will Serve Today
(1 Corinthians 10:21)
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, I believe we are in the Last Days and Jesus will be coming soon; perhaps in my lifetime. Now the apostles and early church also believed that Jesus' second coming would be soon. This belief has been carried throughout church history. From the advantage of looking back in history we can see how prophesy has been fulfilled with regards of events like the creation of the nation of Israel and so on. Perhaps we might even think "they weren't smart enough to understand" and "we are smart enough now." Have you some thoughts on how the church even 100 years ago thought that the Last Days were coming soon, while we look back and say, "Well, these events still need to happen first." I wonder if God has planned it all of this in such a way that every period of time prior to the rapture believes the Last Days are just around the corner. I suppose if God didn't plan it that way we might become skeptical and/or lose hope believing Jesus' coming was "too far off."
ANSWER: The fact is, ever since Jesus ascended to Heaven from the Mt. of Olives in the Book of Acts, we have been in the "last days," and His coming has been imminent. While there are some prophetic events that need to take place, I don't put as much credence in this event or that event being the fulfillment of prophecy since so much is subjective and you can point to many different events over time that could be fulfilling certain prophecies. During WW2 it was easy to point to Hitler as the anti-Christ and an entire world engulfed in war as being the "last days." Here is what people need to understand. Psalm 90:4 says, "A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night." We are currently living in a finite existence, where God is not bound by time/space as we will not be when this life is over. While the 2,000 years since Christ ascended seems like a long time to us, it is NOTHING on the radar of eternity. The FACT is, we ARE in the last days and the many Biblical references to what the last days will look like confirm that, and the second coming of Christ IS imminent and will happen in the "twinkling of an eye!"
"Dear Pastor Keller, I would like to give you an update on my progress. A long time ago, I have prayed that prayer to invite Christ into my heart through one of your Daily Devotionals. I received your booklet, and read through it. Since then, I have become involved with a church, am praying more and reading the scriptures. Next month, I will become a member of that church and be baptized. I have no doubt that this is the our heavenly Father has put in place for me. I know that through the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, anything can be accomplished. It all started with Liveprayer.com. Thank you Pastor Keller for all you do. God bless you! Jessie"
THIS is what all of the sacrifices so many make each day is about. Through boldly and without shame or compromise taking the simple message of the Gospel and the hope we have in Christ to the masses in the marketplace, every day we see the fruit of those efforts in the very real lives of those God touches through His work here. LIVES ARE BEING TRANSFORMED BY THE POWER OF GOD AND SOULS ARE BEING SAVED!!!
As the prophet Elijah said on Mt. Carmel in 1 Kings 18, "If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal is god, follow him." It is time to decide whose side you are on. The days of trying to play both sides are over. It is time to decide whose side you are on. The days of living with one foot in the church, and one foot in the world are over. It is time to decide whose side you are on. The battle lines are being drawn my friend.
Most people don't want to think of this life as a war, but that is exactly what it is. On one side we have God, the Creator of the heavens and earth, our Creator that loves us. The Bible says that it is God's desire that all come to repentance and none be lost. It was God's plan from the beginning that man spend eternity with Him. On the other side, we have satan, a fallen angel that for this brief season we call human history, is working to drag as many souls as possible with him into an eternity of torment in hell. This war is for the eternal souls of every man and woman that is born.
>From the garden of Eden until today this war has raged on. God created us perfect, with the free will to love Him. However, that free will also gave us the ability to rebel against God, otherwise, we would be little more than robots. Sadly, man made the choice to disobey God, and now sin would be part of the human condition and destroy the perfect world God had created for us to live in. The war for the human soul had begun.
Satan has come up with every plan imaginable to keep us lost in our sin and separated from God for eternity. He has used our desire for God to help us create the false religions of the world to lead us away from God's saving grace. He has worked hard to undermine God's holy institution of marriage started in Genesis 2:24 and destroy God's plan for the family. Satan uses our sin nature to help put is in bondage to things like drugs, alcohol, money, sex outside of marriage, and anything else that can destroy our life. Whatever satan can do to separate us from God, he will do. After all, in John 10 Jesus clearly tells us that satan's desire is to "steal, kill, and destroy."
As the last days of human history are fast approaching, satan is now in full, all out war against the church. Make no mistake, the church has ALWAYS been a major target of satan. From the tabernacles and temples in the Old Testament, to the dawn of the church age in the book of Acts, through today, satan has corrupted men and women of God in leadership and used division of every kind to keep the church from being all God intends it to be.
You see, the church has been, and still is, God's primary instrument in this world today. It is through the church that billions of souls throughout the years have found an everlasting relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ. It is the church that is still responsible for taking God's message of hope in Christ to this lost, hurting, and dying world.
So do not be surprised that satan is working hard to destroy the church. Destroy the church through false teachings like "all good people will go to Heaven." Destroy the church by allowing blatant and unrepentant sin to be accepted and embraced. Destroy the church by denying the Bible to be God's inspired, inerrant Word, representing absolute truth, and our final authority in all matters. Destroy the church by doing everything possible to divide the Body of Christ. But NEVER forget that Jesus said the "gates of hell" will not overcome the church!
I love you and care about you so much. The battle lines are drawn. This is NOT a game. It is an all out war and the eternal souls of people are at stake. People are dying and going to hell for eternity every day. For the last 40 years, the church has been sitting back and playing defense and satan has been scoring lots of points. It is time for the church to start playing offense. We have the power of the Holy Spirit with us. NOTHING can stop us. We already know the final score. GOD WINS!!!
Paul wrote, "You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord's table and the table of demons." - 1 Corinthians 10:21
Like Elijah, I am challenging you today. If you are a Christian, then follow Christ. The battle lines are clearly drawn. Jesus said that you can't serve two masters. It is time to choose. Who are you going to follow?
***NOVEMBER FINANCIAL UPDATE: Amen! As we are now 13 days into November and are down to the final $8,000 of the $25,000 we were short from our October operations. I need everyone to pray, and those who can to make a sacrifice today in order that we can cover this shortfall before the end of this week! Please be praying about what the Lord is asking you to do to support HIS work here at Liveprayer in the next few days to take care of the balance of October so we can begin working on the $40,000 we need for our basic November operations. BECAUSE OF THANKSGIVING THE LAST FEW DAYS OF THE MONTH, MANY PEOPLE WILL BE TRAVELING AND FOCUSED ON OTHER THINGS THE FINAL WEEK OF THE MONTH. THAT IS GOING TO MAKE IT VERY DIFFICULT FOR US TO SIMPLY BRING IN THE FUNDS WE NEED FOR OUR BASIC OPERATIONS. SO PLEASE, PRAY ABOUT WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP ME IN THE COMING DAYS AND WEEKS TO INSURE WE END THE MONTH WITH ALL OF OUR BASIC OPERATIONAL NEEDS TAKEN CARE OF!!!
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In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,