First Presbyterian Church of Blackwood
21 E. Church Street
Blackwood, NJ 08012
Sermon Notes (Sunday ~ November 19 2023)
Rev. Dwayne M. Doyle, Guest Preacher
Getting Ready for Christ’s Return
I Thessalonians 5:1-22; Matthew 25:14-30; Psalm 90:9-11,12
Have you ever missed a flight, were late to a theater performance, forgot you had an appointment, or overslept? If you have then you may be able to not being prepared for something or being caught off guard.
We may not know the actual day that Jesus will return but there are some indicators from scripture. But even if we could figure out if we are in the last days, today’s scripture warns us that we should always be prepared. Like a homeowner who doesn’t suspect a thief coming to burglar his or her house, we may get caught off guard. Jesus will come like a thief in the night. What kinds of things ought we to do to be prepared for his coming?
Is there anything you have left undone that needs to be done?
Are you right vertically with God and horizontally with man and woman?
Don’t wait until tomorrow and call that person that you have a disagreement with, to make every effort for peace and reconciliation.
You are only responsible for your end, they are responsible for their reactions. Let you conscience be clear.
If you are sinning, stop whatever you are doing that you know is wrong. Get help, if need be, counseling. Cleanup your act.
If you confess your sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we say we haven’t sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.
I John 1:9-10.
Jesus’s death on the cross for the sins of the world is the only way that you can be acceptable in God’s sight to enter into the Kingdom of God. Have you been clothed with the raiment of Christ’s sacrificial blood that cleanses us forever? While the animals that were sacrificed during time of the time of the Jewish sacrificial system temporarily helped with the jews sins, Christ’s sacrifice satisfies the wrath of God that will be carried out on all who have not put their trust in Jesus as their Lord and Savior. He died once for all. There is no longer need for anymore sacrifices.
For if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and you believe in your heart that God rose him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with the mouth that we confess and with the heart we believe. (Romans 10:9-10) Have you made a public commitment and put your faith in Jesus Christ? Jesus said if you are ashamed of me before men, I will be ashamed of you before my Father in Heaven. (Luke 9:26) We need to publicly take a stand for Jesus Christ.
Parable of the Talents
The church is spoken of as the Body of Christ of which he is the head. Each of us plays an important part of the Body’s function. When one of us is missing, we miss that part. When one of us is hurting, we all hurt. Ask people what they things your gifts might be. Use these gifts to edify the boy of Christ. If it is encouragement, then encourage. If it is service, then serve. If it is in leadership, then lead. If it is in teaching, then teach. If it is in administration, then administer. If it is in following, then follow. Just don’t be like the servant who buried his talent in the sand. If we don’t use it we may lose it eventually.
Are you ready for the second coming of Jesus Christ? Amen.
When, Where, Why, What, How? These are the questions we ask when trying to understand any situation.
Why is Jesus coming back?
To take his bride, the church, to be with him, both the living and the dead, for all eternity. (Rev. 19:7-8; Ephesians 5:22-33)
John 14:1-5- “I go to prepare a place for you so that where I am, you may be also. In my house there are many dwelling places.”
Jesus is coming to judge the nations. The first time he came as an innocent infant born in in a manger. His second coming portrays him as riding on a white horse with the words ‘King of Kings & Lord or Lords´ written on his thigh. He has a fiery sword coming out of his mouth. “Every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that he is Lord.” (Philippians 2:10-11; Isaiah 45:23)
There will also be a terrible judgment upon the world. Romans 2:5
Passages that talk about the Second Coming of Christ or ‘parousia’ (I Peter 4:7;Matthew 24:42,44; Rev. 1:7; II Peter 3:10;Matthew 24:30-31; Acts 1:10-11; Luke 21:34-36; Rev. 22:12; Matthew 16:27;Johon 6:39-40; Matthew 24:27)
When will Jesus Return?
Jesus will come at an unexpected time. When Noah built the ark and the flood came and water from the depths swept all the people and animals away who were below the highest mountain tops. People were eating and drinking and being given in marriage. Genesis 6:17-21
The parable of the ten Virgins. Five prepared for the wedding banquet by having enough oil in their lamps. The other five Virgins didn’t have enough oil and asked to borrow from the other five, but they couldn’t give it to them. She was outside and couldn’t be let into the ceremony.
The Son of God will come at an hour we do not know. No one knows the day or the time, not the angles in heaven, not the Son of God, only the Father in heaven knows the day and the hour. Matthew 24:36
As lightening comes so will it be when the son of Man returns. Many will be saying that they are the Messiah, but these will not be the Messiah.
As Jesus ascended to heaven after his resurrection, so he will descend from heaven out of the clouds.
It is ok to look for the signs of his coming, but don’t fooled into thinking we will know the day or hour.
Don’t be caught doing ungodly things. Be about the work of the Kingdom. The Kingdom of God has come in the person of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God is coming.
And finally, the last enemy to be put under the feet of Jesus will be death.
The reality is that for each of us whether Jesus returns while we are living or we meet him when we died we will be with Jesus.
Absent from the body, present with the Lord. We will not know anything after until we see Jesus face to face.
What a glorious day that will be.
Let’s review some of the things we have said to prepare ourselves for Jesus’s Return:
I Peter 3:15 “Always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”
One way to share your faith with someone is to prepare a testimony and learn some Bible Verses:
Testimony: Prepare a short testimony of how you came to know the Lord. It can be 1minute, 2 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or 15 minutes.
Life before you knew the Lord.
How you came to know the Lord.
Bible verse that is important to you
Life after coming to the Lord.
Practice saying your testimony.
Scripture Verses: God’s Simple Plan of Salvation ‘The Roman Road to Salvation’
Romans 3:10 As it is written. There is none righteous, no, not one;
Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
Romans 5:6 But God commended his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Romans 10:9-10 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Romans 10:13 For whosever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Salvation Station Ministries 440-355-6593
Charge and Benediction
Friends, go in peace, and be peace
Go in hope, and be hope.
Go in faith, and be faithful.
And as you go, may the grace of God cover you,
The love of Christ shine within you,
And the Spirit’s courage propel your forward,
This day and forevermore. Amen.
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