I count it a privilege to know God, to have the freedom to hear His Word preached, to learn from pastors who spend 10 hours preparing for a sermon that I am allowed to sit and listen to for 30 minutes. So I am going to take 15 minutes every Monday and share what I heard from the Sunday messages I hear. I view all believers as a “holy priesthood (1Peter 2:9)”.
Pastors put more time into studying His word than most do, but they are no holier than the people they are speaking to. That’s why I believe this is something worthwhile. I believe you, like me, have an opportunity to learn from the words that I pass on to you (from the pastor that passed them onto me, from the words God has given us all). Let’s dig in!
This week I had the privilege of attending my parents’ home church, New Life Church International (visit on Facebook)in Lima, OH. Thanks to Bishop Darnell Williams for sharing with us! Here is what I heard on Sunday morning.
The Blessed Life
1. Be ready to go!
Matthew 25:1 = Kingdom is like 10 virgins (5 wise and 5 foolish)
If we’re a part of the kingdom of heaven, we have to ask ourselves if we are wise or foolish. There are things you can look at to determine whether you are foolish or not (actions, thinking, talk, childish, godless life, act without thinking of the future).
Here are a few highlights from Matthew 25:1-12, showing how some are prepared for Christ to return and some are not.
- Verse 3 = Foolish virgins took lamp without oil, to meet the bridegroom (not thinking).
- Verse 4 = Wise virgins took oil, and vessel (to be sure they were even more prepared).
- Verse 6 = You are a participant in the wedding. You have to respond / go and meet the bridegroom.
- Verse 8 = Foolish virgins finally realized they were not prepared.
- Verse 9 = Wise virgins were not going to bail out the foolish. The fools had their chance to prepare in advance.
- Verse 10-12 = Jesus (the bridegroom) does not know the unprepared fools.
2. Be ready to serve!
- Matthew 25:14 = Kingdom like travelling man, calling servants.
- He gave talents due to their ability. Likewise, God has given us talents and gifts in order to serve Him.
- Understand your capacity to do something for your master.
- Find balance of not doing enough and doing so much you are overwhelmed.
- The man that only received one didn’t use it, but hid it.
- We should learn to stop doing what we have not been blessed with.
- Work on your strength, stop trying to develop weakness.
- Matthew 25:21 = God doesn’t compare our scorecards, and doesn’t grade on a curve. Your reward and judgment will be based on your life alone.
- We all have the same capacity, but have different opportunities.
- Don’t do your best because you fear the Lord, do it because He first loved you.
- 1 John 4:18 = there is no fear in love.
- Love casts out fear. Fear is tormenting, can be demonic.
Are we effectively living a life prepared for His return, while also serving Him until that day comes? Do you want the impact your life makes on this world to be like a flash of lightning (gone within seconds) or like an atomic bomb (residue is left for a long time)?