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About-Him.Com Devotional 03-09-2013

It's Time to Wake Up!

Last week’s devotional dealt with loving God and our neighbor as our selves.  In so doing, we will fulfill all that the Old Testament Mosaic law and the prophets demand.  

Romans 13:11 ¶  And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.  

Romans 13:11 begins a new paragraph. I believe that the Weymouth New Testament translation of verse 11 gives a better sense of tying the present text together with the previous paragraph, than the KJV that I normally use.  

“Carry out these injunctions because you know the critical period at which we are living, and that it is now high time, to rouse yourselves from sleep; for salvation is now nearer to us than when we first became believers.”  

Now is not the time to be self-centered and self-indulgent. It is not the time to ignore our struggling brothers and sisters. We must always treat others as we desire to be treated, even when it hurts (Ps. 15:4). Nor should we be lulled  to sleep and be like the Laodicean church who felt that because they had all the creature comforts that one could desire, they had need of nothing else. Jesus thought otherwise: He said that they were, “wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked.” Because they were lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, He would spew them out of His mouth (Re. 3:14-22). Certainly that is a warning that we ignore at our own peril.  

In Matthew 24, Jesus gives us insights to conditions that would be prevalent, prior to His second coming: False prophets would arise and  deceive  many. Because iniquity would abound, the love of many would grow cold. However, the person who endured through all of this would be saved. Obviously, we are in a pressing time. We see sin and iniquity on every hand. It’s easy to become accustomed to the dark. We yawn at the things that used to give rise to our righteous indignation. For example when Clark Gable uttered a mild profanity at the ending of the movie Gone With the Wind, it caused a national uproar. We don’t hear too many uproars today over the language in movies and TV, do we?  

Matthew 24:44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.  

Jesus told us that there would be some who figured that the Lord had delayed his coming and would use that as an excuse to abuse their fellow servants. Those who fall into this trap, will find their portion with the unbelievers.  (Lu. 12:45).  

Peter tells us that there will be those who question the promise of the Lord’s return. They reason that because its been 2000 years since the promise, it evidently isn’t going to happen, so we might as well eat, drink and be merry, for we’ll all soon be in the grave. Peter reminds us that God doesn’t keep time like we do. With Him, a day is as a thousand years and a year is as a day. He is not anxious to damn us, He is patiently waiting for us to repent (2 Pe. 3:4-10)!  

We need to remember that we all are just one heartbeat away from eternity. If we pass on today, we’ll meet the Lord in judgment, either for good or bad. For us then , the timing of His return will be a moot point. See: Reflections (When will I come before Him?)   

Romans 13:12  The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.
13  Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.
14  But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.

Paul urges his readers to cast off the works of darkness and to put on the armor of light. This stands in marked contrast to the works of darkness. The works of darkness proceed from Satan and the armor of light proceed from our God whose very being in Light. There is no darkness in Him (1 Jn. 1:5). We have no choice, we have to serve one or the other (Mt. 6:24).  

Drowsy Christians are not unique to our times.  Paul also warned the Colossians and the Thessalonians against the perils of spiritual slumber.  

Ephesians 5:14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.  

1 Thessalonians  5:6 ¶  Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.

We might be spiritual giants, but we are not immune from our lazy and sinful flesh wanting to do it’s own thing.  

Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.  

Some use the preceding verse as an excuse for not coming up to the mark, but that was not Paul’s intention. He is warning us that we will fight a battle with our flesh until the day we die. But he also gives us the answer for victorious living, which is walking in the Spirit.  

Galatians 5:16 [This] I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.  

Roman 8:1 ¶ [There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

In Matthew 25, Jesus gives us the Parable of the Ten Virgins which certainly applies to the end time church. While the virgins were waiting for the Bridegroom to return, they all nodded off to sleep. They were all pure and all had oil in their lamps, which is a type of the Holy Spirit. When the cry went out that the Bridegroom was returning, they all woke up and began to trim their lamps.  Unfortunately five of them missed the coming of the Bridegroom, because they ran out of oil.    

The call is going out more urgently than ever that Jesus is on the verge of returning for His saints and to execute judgment on an unbelieving world (Jude 1:14-15). Have we checked our spiritual lamps lately? How’s our oil supply?

Somebody Has Said
 I believe the promises of God enough to venture an eternity on them. - Isaac Watts

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Keep Looking Up!

Don and Marie Spooner
About Him! Ministries

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