For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. (I Corinthians 13:12)
I know this is speaking about the dim reflection of an ancient mirror which did not give a very distinct image, but I would like to take a thought from this, like the preacher who takes a text and then departs from it. I would like for us to notice how modern day people are looking at the events of the world, sin, the second coming and all subjects related to God through ROSE COLORED GLASSES. They are not able to see reality because of their dim view of the things of God. Many of God’s own people are wearing ROSE COLORED GLASSES. They either cannot see or are not wanting to see what is happening about them.
People have a dim view of:
ILL> While I was pastor at Moore, a lady who had not been to church in months said to me, “I know I ought to be in church, but I’m not so bad.” What she and so many more do not realize is we are not so good.
- Sin is a terrible thing and yet most people look at it through their rose colored glasses and it doesn’t look too bad.
- People have come to tolerate sin, as long as it isn’t too drastic. (But very little is too drastic.)
- God hates sin.
- The flood.
- The tower of Babel.
- Sodom and Gomorrah.
- Achan and we could go on and on.
- God instructs us to separate ourselves from sin.
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. (II Corinthians 6:14-7:1)
II. THE PASTOR.
- He is to be the overseer.
Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. (Acts 20:28)
Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; (I Peter 5:2)
- He is responsible for you, not the other way around.
Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. (Hebrews 13:17)
III. THE CHURCH.
And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 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. (Hebrews 10:24-25)
Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come. (I Corinthians 16:2)
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: (Matthew 28:19)
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. (Acts 1:8)
- Good Works.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)
- They cannot believe God could expect them to live up to His standards.
- They cannot believe God would allow anyone to go to hell.
- They believe God to be a God of love who could not have any other attributes other than love and mercy.
- While God is a God of love and mercy, He is also a God of justice and judgment.
Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. (Jeremiah 23:5)
- Justice demands judgment.
VI. THE WORLD SITUATION.
- They are not willing to admit the world is getting into a state of almost total apostasy.
- While they are worried about the wars, they are unaware of what the world is shaping up for.
- The world is getting ready for the reign of Christ.
And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (Revelation 20:4)
VII. THE COMING OF CHRIST.
- Many believe Jesus is coming again, but to them it is something to take place in the distant future.
- They cannot see the events of the middle East are a fulfillment of God’s Word which are to take place around the time of Christ’s return.
After many days thou shalt be visited: in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel, which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them. Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog, Thus saith the Lord GOD; In that day when my people of Israel dwelleth safely, shalt thou not know it? And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee, all of them riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army: And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes. Thus saith the Lord GOD; Art thou he of whom I have spoken in old time by my servants the prophets of Israel, which prophesied in those days many years that I would bring thee against them? And it shall come to pass at the same time when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that my fury shall come up in my face. For in my jealousy and in the fire of my wrath have I spoken, Surely in that day there shall be a great shaking in the land of Israel; So that the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all the men that are upon the face of the earth, shall shake at my presence, and the mountains shall be thrown down, and the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground. And I will call for a sword against him throughout all my mountains, saith the Lord GOD: every man’s sword shall be against his brother. And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone. Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the LORD. (Ezekiel 38:8, 14-23)
- They are unaware that the changing of morality and standards of life are setting the stage for Christ’s return.
- Jesus has promised to come again.
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
- The Bible tells us He will come at an hour when we think not.
Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. (Matthew 24:44)
- His return is in two stages, the rapture and the visible coming in the clouds.
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; (Titus 2:13)
VIII. GOD’S WAY OF SALVATION.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)