How Then Should We Live
12 October 2008
· Luke 18:1-8 - “… when the Son of man comes, will He find faith on earth?”
· World wide attention on problems in the financial system.
· People shaken, uncertain, fearful, loss of trust.
· Jesus directive : “Always Pray, Don’t Faint”
· Key issue at the coming of the Lord = Will He find Faith?
= Faith for the supernatural?
Faith that brings heaven to earth?
Faith that perseveres in prayer in the face of resistance?
· Living faith is always revealed in what we say and do.
· Greed led to today’s crisis. We get caught up in the world and not in what God is doing.
· We are blessed. Abundance doesn’t mean blessing. We do things differently – we are not driven by greed. People who want more will never have enough.
· Be thankful for what you have, e.g. no money for food yet we are blessed we could go and pick up apples. No car but we got to borrow a car in trade for some apples etc.
· To save is to have money in the bank that accrues interest, not the item you bought for a bargain seen as saving. As warned before, to get rid of debt and spend money to advance the Kingdom of God. As a stuart of it, use it wisely.
2. Bible warnings concerning “End Times”:
· Jesus taught much concerning end times and His coming.
· Two things certain - Naturally = death and Taxes
- Spiritually = Coming of Christ and Judgment, the Lord will
Return, will call everyone to account.
· Will He find persevering faith that stands up to the pressures of this world? A living Faith.
· People that overcome push trough and brings heaven to earth. They bring the supernatural into this world.
· Some people are not walking in faith. Faith has to have legs on it to bring God into the earth.
· Some things the parables are saying about the end times that are negative:
Guaranteed to be turmoil in the world. Christians response to this world is fear and not what faith in mediating in God and the things of God. They are stressed out about living, self-centeredness, ungrateful etc.
We are called to focus on other things not just the bad stuff that happens around us.
Matthew 24:6-7 - wars and families, earthquakes, rumors of wars
Matthew 24:10-12 - Offences, betrayal, lukewarmness
Matthew 24:9 - Tribulation, pressure, hated by all nations. The west gets upset when they’re under pressure but there are some Christians that die in Indonesia for the Gospel sake.
Luke 21:25 - Fear and uncertainty, man’s heart will fail them because they fear, we are more concerned about our comfort.
· Some things the bible says concerning the end time that are positive:
Matthew 24:14 - the Gospel of the Kingdom preached.
Daniel 2:44 - God’s Kingdom prevail over all other kingdoms. Don’t be fearful.
· There are many speculations about the details of His coming.
· How should we live today? Faith believes, then acts. This Gospel of the Kingdom to all nations of the earth – our mandate = make the Good News known to all people. It doesn’t matter how small the church it will become great.
3. Jesus’ Clear Command to the Disciples:
· Jesus told parables concerning His coming.
· Parables are stories that:
1) Illustrates a Truth – Practiced
2) Has Spiritual meaning
3) Has Prophetic meaning
· Matthew 24-25 - Jesus told 7 parables to illustrate His coming.
· Each parable illustrates, has spiritual meaning, and is prophetic and practical.
i) Parable of the Fig tree – Matthew 24: 12-35:
· Key word: verse 32 “Learn” = to gain insight and understanding.
· Key command: “Recognize the Season you are in and respond”
· Fig tree = the Nation of Israel emerging as a nation.
· 1948 Israel emerged as a nation after 2000 years dispersion.
· Matthew 6:33 - Seek first the Kingdom of God.
- Need to adjust priorities – Live with eternity in mind.
- Discover what God is saying to do now:
1) Global Harvest – reach the whole world
2) Press through for the Supernatural
3) Kingdom to invade culture, engage community, and bring the Gospel.
4) Apostolic ministry to the people around us. Go out to make a difference. Sent out to go. Be productive in life.
ii) Parable of Noah – Matthew 24:36-42:
· Key word: “Watch” – to be awake, alert, aware.
· Key command: “Maintain a strong active prayer life”
· In the days of Noah: Genesis 4:1-14 – a range of activities in the world.
· Religion via travel - vs 16 City building – vs 22 Violence – vs 23
Agriculture – ve 20 Music & Arts - vs 21 Sexual sin – vs 19
Metallurgy – vs 23
· Matthew 26:41 - “Watch and Pray”
· Luke 21:34-36 - “Watch and Pray”
· Watch – connected with prayer, not be seduced by the comfort of this world. Watch and pray.
iii) Parable of the Thief – Matthew 24:42-44:
· Key word: “Be ready”
· Key command: “Prepare yourself spiritually”.
· Increase in demonic activity throughout the world. People get ripped of. Be ready, prepare yourself spiritually. Put on the full armor of God.
· Ephesians 6:10-11 - Put on the whole armor of God.
iv) Parable of the Servant – Matthew 24:45-51
· Key word: “Wise and Faithful’ - verse 45 – Some servants of God is wise and faithful and others are unwise/foolish.
· Be committed to strengthen God’s people and Church.
· Key command: “Build the Church – Build God’s People”.
· Wise servant was identified because he nurtured the house of God. They understand to build the church, people and the kingdom of God.
· Foolish servant abused the house of God, break it down, do their own thing and hurt others.
· 1 Corinthians 12:7 - “To every man … to profit with all”.
v) Parable of the Virgins – Matthew 25:1-13:
· Key words: “Ready and Busy”.
· Key command: “Pursue the Anointing and Power of the Holy Spirit”.
· Oil = Picture of the Holy Spirit
· Virgins = believers that have a relationship with the Lord.
· All were virgins, all went out, and all had lamps.
· Wise: used the opportunity to obtain oil, to recognize what God is doing.
· Key issue: Busy = must pay a personal price for the supernatural.
· Acts 4:31 - Prayed – filled with the Holy Spirit.
· Build your prayer life, a culture of prayer. If it was hard God wouldn’t require it from us. We are responsible to carry the oil and the fire of God. Position yourself to get it.
vi) Parable of the Talents – Matthew 25:14-30:
· Key word: “Traded”
· Key command: “Be productive in advancing the Kingdom of God”.
· Servants = believers, talents = gifts from God given to a persons ability.
· All were servants of God – all were given the opportunity.
· Wise and faithful are productive – took the risk and invested.
· Ephesians 5:15-17 - Redeeming the true throne and understanding the will of God.
· Advance God’s interests in the world. Find ways to influence people in the community. What have you got? How can you meet a need? Take what you have got and meet a need, touch their life.
vii) Parable of the Nations – Matthew 25:31-46:
· Key word: “to my brethren”.
· Key command: ‘Show compassion to those in need, hurting”
· Luke 10:33-35 - Good Samaritan – went – poured in oil and wine.
It’s our choice to be aware of the hour we live in, it’s a great hour, never been seen before e.g. internet, cell-phones and media.
Do I have the faith that works and respond to what God says?
Am I committed to faith, giving, seeking the anointing and finding hurting people?
Every believer is a minister – how effective are you in what you are called to?
Things happen quickly but the people that do the things of God are prepared.