Sunday, September 16, 2012

Luke 21

Time for you to look around.

One of my favorite chapters in the entire Bible is Luke 21. It is a quiet moment, when Jesus is, presumably sitting with His Disciples in a Synagogue, attending Church if you will, and He is simply having a conversation with them.

It starts off with the Widow and the two mites. All these rich people are putting in large sums of money. They are giving their Tithes and Offerings. Some very large suns of money. And here comes this poor Widow who puts in two mites or about $2.00 bucks today.

Now you know, just like today, if people are dropping in Hundreds and Thousands of dollars, and this woman comes in and puts two bucks in, people are going to stare. They are going to think bad thoughts about her. Jesus, as He does often, corrects us, in the simplest way.

Luke 21
1 And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury.

2 And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites.

3 And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all:

4 For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.
Yeah, I know. I've been there. I've shared the story before. I was blessed with a good Job, making good money, and manageable bills. I was seeking first the Kingdom of God, and all these things were indeed added onto me. So one year, when I got my tax refund, $1800.00, I had no real need for it. So I walked into a Food Pantry, and handed them a check for $1800.00.

I'll never forget that day. I was so happy and excited to go there and give them the check. Until I got there. Here I am, in a expensive Suit and Tie, full length Wool Coat, and nice shoes, walking by people that had little to nothing. They are all standing in line, hoping to get some food to feed their families. Here I am, walking right past all of them standing in line. Torn and worn cloths. Old sneakers. Hoping that the Food Pantry had enough so they would not have to worry about their next meal. I felt about 2 feet tall.

I walk in and hand the ladies the check. One chased me out into the parking lot and asked me if this was real, or perhaps I made a mistake? I told her no it was real, I was blessed, so I wanted to bless others. She gave me one of the biggest hugs I have ever gotten to this day. While all these people watched on.

Now do I have anything to feel bad about? No. Did I have anything to feel ashamed about? Of course not. I was doing a good thing. I was truly blessing others. Yet, somehow, I did feel uncomfortable. I knew that some of those people were thinking to themselves, "Look at this big shot. Who does he think he is?" Truth is, they most likely were not giving me a thought at all. They were more concerned with their needs being met.

What Jesus was saying here, is yes, I will get praise and glory from man. Hugs, and admiration. but in reality, what have I done? What sacrifice did I make? Nothing. None. What about the woman that walks in the pantry and gives them a check for $100.00. She only makes say $200.00 a week. Now, who do you think will be honored more by man? Who do you think will be honored more by God? That's right, the one that makes the bigger sacrifice.

A Tithe is a Tithe. Ten percent. So if you make $200.00, your Tithe is $20.00. If you make $100,000.00 Your Tithe is $10,000.00. Who gives more? Neither. Ten percent is ten percent. Now if that person who makes $200.00 gives $50.00, and the person that makes $100,000.00 decides that the $10,000.00 is enough? Who gives more? You get the point.

When Jesus is talking about this, someone looks up and starts admiring the Synagogue. They most likely commented on the beauty. Jesus said this...
5 And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said,

6 As for these things which ye behold, the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
Jesus was not impressed. So here you are, in Church, with The Lord, literally, and He says, this do not be impressed with the beauty of the building you are in, for it will be destroyed. Huh? Wait. What? So they ask Him about it. I can imagine, I would have too.
7 And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass?
Now I want you to read the rest of this, all the way through, uninterrupted. While you read this, I want you to think about it. We will discuss it a bit more after. But just read the rest of the way through first, thinking about the World today.
8 And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them.

9 But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.

10 Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:

11 And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.

12 But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake.

13 And it shall turn to you for a testimony.

14 Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer:

15 For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.

16 And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death.

17 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake.

18 But there shall not an hair of your head perish.

19 In your patience possess ye your souls.

20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

21 Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.

22 For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.

23 But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

26 Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees;

30 When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.

31 So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.

32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.

33 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.

34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.

35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.

36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

37 And in the day time he was teaching in the temple; and at night he went out, and abode in the mount that is called the mount of Olives.

38 And all the people came early in the morning to him in the temple, for to hear him.
Now lets talk about these things Jesus said. Again, I want you to think about what is going on in the World today.
9 But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.

10 Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:
Russia is back in the control of Putin, who wants to bring back the good old days of the USSR. He is attempting to gain back territories that Russia has lost. He is reinstating the KGB. He is returning to rhetoric against the US. He is showing signs of starting another cold war. Look at North Korea. Look at China. Iran is building a nuclear bomb that they WILL use against Israel, and us. Look at this President and his administration. He is giving more and more of our sovereignty away to the UN, and giving money and aid to the enemies of both our allies and ourselves. The world is a dangerous place, growing more and more dangerous as time goes on.
11 And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. In the past 30 days?
M 3.4, 0km WSW of Beverly Hills, California Friday, September 07, 2012 07:03:09 UTC
M 5.6, 1km SW of Jiaokui, China Friday, September 07, 2012 04:16:30 UTC
M 5.6, 6km SSW of Jiaokui, China Friday, September 07, 2012 03:19:42 UTC
M 7.6, 12km E of Hojancha, Costa Rica Wednesday, September 05, 2012 14:42:07 UTC
M 6.2, 244km S of Sidorukun, Indonesia Monday, September 03, 2012 18:23:04 UTC
M 7.6, 88km E of Sulangan, Philippines Friday, August 31, 2012 12:47:33 UTC
M 6.8, 88km NW of Olonkinbyen, Svalbard and Jan Mayen Thursday, August 30, 2012 13:43:25 UTC
M 4.1, 3km NE of Yorba Linda, California Wednesday, August 29, 2012 20:31:00 UTC
M 7.3, 131km S of Puerto El Triunfo, El Salvador Monday, August 27, 2012 04:37:18 UTC
M 5.5, 5km NNW of Brawley, California Sunday, August 26, 2012 20:57:58 UTC
M 5.3, 4km NNW of Brawley, California Sunday, August 26, 2012 19:31:22 UTC
M 6.6, 140km WNW of Tobelo, Indonesia Sunday, August 26, 2012 15:05:37 UTC
M 6.3, 53km SSE of Palu, Indonesia Saturday, August 18, 2012 09:41:52 UTC


Tropical Storms and Hurricanes are said to be increasing in number and strengths. We just had Tropical Storm Isaac hit Florida.

There are food wars going on in parts of the world. For many reasons, from droughts, to man-made causes, food in increasing in price and in scarcity Entire countries are starting to have issues with being able to feed themselves.

14 September 2012, Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo, 12 September 2012

Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome – Yosemite National Park, United States of America, 8 September 2012

Cholera in Sierra Leone, As of September 11, 2012, 48 states in America, have reported West Nile infections in people, birds, or mosquitoes. 2,636 cases in people, causing 118 deaths.
Just to name a few.
12 But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake.

13 And it shall turn to you for a testimony.

14 Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer:

15 For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.

16 And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death.

17 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake.

18 But there shall not an hair of your head perish.

19 In your patience possess ye your souls.
All throughout history, the world has hated God's chosen people. First the Jews, now the Christians. Look at what is happening. Christians are being sold into slavery. They are being hunted down and killed. Churches are being burned. It is increasing in severity and occurrence, all around the world.

Now I know, many will say, there have been wars and rumors of wars, natural disasters, diseases, and famines all throughout history. What makes this time different than any other? Israel.
20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

21 Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.

22 For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.
Look at the middle east. Iran is building a bomb. It will use it. Egypt has been taken over by an Islamic regime that declared Israel their number one enemy as their first official act as a ruling party. The advance of Islam and Sharia Law all throughout the middle east, attacking our embassies, murdering ambassadors, burning flags, etc? Israel is completely surrounded by those that see to destroy it.

Now Israel will not simply lay down and go away. They will fight back. When this happens, we will have a choice to make as a country. If we get involved to help them, others will get involve to stop us. World War Three.

Gas prices? Skyrocket and become scarce. Fuel to heat your home, run power plants? Skyrocket in price, and become scarce. Food? Prices skyrocket and become scarce. People will do whatever they have to just to survive. If that means stealing, and even killing, depending on how bad it gets, they WILL steal and kill, just to get food. Not just in other parts of the World, but right here in America as well.
23 But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

26 Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
All these things are lining up You can see many interesting and curious things happening in the Sun, Moon , and Stars today. We know our Weather has been unusually odd as well. Add this to the sickness and disease outbreaks, famine, and things forming in the middle east, and you have cause to pause and think about it.

Now do not be mislead. I do not know an exact date. No one does. If they tell you, oh, I don't know, December 21st 2012, at midnight, the world will end. Do not believe them. Jesus made this clear in

Matthew 24:
36 But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.

37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

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 Noah entered into the ark,

39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?

46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.

47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

48 But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;

49 And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;

50 The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,

51 And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
And also in....

Mark 13:
32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

33 Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.

34 For the Son of Man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.

35 Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning:

36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.

37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.
So in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and various other mentions, Revelations of course, it tells us these thing will happen. It tells us these things are planed, and guaranteed. It really is not a question of if, but when. What does this mean then? Why would Jesus tell us these things. He is telling us for three reasons. 

1 - The importance of sharing the Gospel. The importance of telling others the good news. That as a child of God, they no longer have to worry about what happens. They have true Salvation.

2- To comfort us. Telling us that these things will happen, before they happen, so we are not deceived. Letting us know that we are different than the rest of the world. That even though the world itself will end as it is now, we can take comfort in the fact, He is coming for US.
27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees;

30 When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.

31 So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.

32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.

33 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.

34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.

35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.

36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

37 And in the day time he was teaching in the temple; and at night he went out, and abode in the mount that is called the mount of Olives.

38 And all the people came early in the morning to him in the temple, for to hear him.
"And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh." Does he tell us to go hide in a cave with canned food? No. He tells us to occupy until He comes. Live life. Enjoy the good things. But keep watching the World and the Signs He warned us about. Follow His Word. Live for God. Seek first the Kingdom of God. "For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark." Be as you are. But be watching and ready.

3- Do not worry about things you cannot change. We will talk more about this, next time. In some cases, perhaps more importantly, do not try to change them. Trust in God. For these things must come to pass.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you said the Prayer? Are you a Child of God? If not, please say this Prayer now. It only take a second to change your very life forever.

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now you need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. But you are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10} You no longer have to worry about these things. Are we facing World War Three? I believe we are. Will Nuclear Weapons be involved? Perhaps. Will this bring about the end of the world? Possibly. Possibly not. But the Fig Tree does appear to be "shooting forth." Why wait to be sure, it will no longer matter to you? As a matter of fact, it could be a time of rejoicing and celebration. Our Lord, Jesus The Christ, could be coming back, sooner than the world knows. He will be coming for YOU.

Until next time, be blessed, and Jesus IS Lord!

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