Temple Baptist Church 03-02-2008
Matthew 24:1-8; Philippians 3:17-4:1
Introduction: We live in the light of the eminent return of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. What a blessed hope! We will be raptured out of this present, evil world into an eternity too wonderful to describe. Stand fast in these last days because many of God’s people are already casualties in the spiritual warfare of these last, perilous days.
A. Days of Great Falling - 1 Corinthians 10:6-12 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
B. Days of Great Failing - Hebrews 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; (What we see in God’s people today is a result of years of satanic attack!)
1. The Attack Of Humanism. The public school system has instilled their religion, humanism, into the children of America . These children are self-centered and situation ethics has become the rule of the day.
2. The Attack Of Immorality. Adultery has become an affair. Abortion has become pro-choice. Fornication has become free love. Cursing and swearing are no longer as offensive as they once were. If it feels good, do it has become the motto of the youth of America as well as the elder generation.
3. The Attack Of Brainwashing By The News Media. A man once said something similar to this: you can control the armies of the nation but, if I control the printed page, I control the nation. The News Media is “far left” in their interpretation and presentation of the news. They misuse, misconstrue, and twist each story to taint the minds of the hearers and readers.
4. The Attack Of Pacifism. Our nation was built upon the foundation of God’s Truth and the blood of our servicemen. John McCain said words to this effect: American does not mind occupation; they just can’t stand causalities! I thank God that the first two World Wars had a different philosophy!
5. The Attack Of The Loss Of Militant Patriotism. I love America ! I will fight and die for America ! Our borders are now flooded with people who will not learn the language, salute the flag, or die for American’s freedom. America ’s citizenry will not stand, remove their hats, nor salute when the National Anthem is being played.
6. The Attack Of The Loss Of Productivity. “Made in America ” once meant something! Now our productivity is decreased along with craftsmanship. American is lazy and has raised a lazy posterity.
7. And Foremost, The Attack Of An Anemic Church. Powerless, careless, worldly, and despicable local churches that no longer march to victory beneath the Banner Of The Cross! May God help us, as believers, to withstand in the evil day and, having done all, to stand!
C. These Are Disappointing Days of Great Change. The world is characterized by:
1. Preoccupation with physical appetites - Luke 17:27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
2. Grossly materialistic attitudes and interests - Luke 17:28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot ; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
3. Rapid advances in technology - Daniel 12:4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, [even] to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
4. Inordinate devotion to pleasure and comfort - 2 Timothy 3:1-4 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5. No concern for God in either belief or conduct - 2 Peter 2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth [person], a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
Jude 15 To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard [speeches] which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.
6. Disregard for the sacredness of the marriage relation. - Matthew 24:38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,
7. Rejection of the inspired Word of God - 1 Peter 3:19-20 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; 20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.
8. Population explosion - Genesis 6:1 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,
9. Widespread violence - Genesis 6:11, 13 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence…And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
10. General corruption throughout society - Genesis 6:12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
11. Preoccupation with illicit sexual activity - Genesis 4:19 And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one [was] Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.
Genesis 6:2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they [were] fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
Romans 1:31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
D. In order to stand in these last days, it will take the help of the Lord:
1. It will take His Power - Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. (His power is available.)
2. It will take His Grace - 2 Timothy 2:1 Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. (His grace is sufficient.)
E. A wise man once said, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing!” These Need To Be Days of Great Resolve and Faithfulness - 1 Corinthians 16:13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
HOW TO STAND
1. Stand Fast Where You Are - vs 11 - Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
2. Stand United In Love - vs 2-3 - Philippians 1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;
Philippians 2:1-2 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
3. Stand Rejoicing - vs 4 - Philippians 3:1 Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe.
1 Thessalonians 5:16 Rejoice evermore.
4. Stand Praying - vs 6 - 1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.
James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
5. Stand Trusting - vs 7 - John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
6. Stand Pure - vs 8
a. Purity of Heart - 1 Timothy 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
b. Purity of Testimony - 1 Timothy 5:22 Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.
c. Purity of Love - 1 Peter 1:22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
d. Purity of Hope - 1 John 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.
7. Stand Serving - vs 9 - Galatians 5:13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.
Hebrews 12:28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
8. Stand Giving - vs 10 - 1 Corinthians 8:1-5 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia ; How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves; Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints. And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.
9. Stand Content - vs 11 - Matthew 6:31-34 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God , and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
10. Stand Strong - vs 13 - Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
11. Stand Obedient - vs 14-17 - Romans 6:16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?
12. Stand Encouraged - vs 18 - 1 Samuel 30:6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.
Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
13. Stand Assured - vs 19 - Hebrews 10:22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
14. Stand Praising - vs 20 - Hebrews 2:12 Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.