“Just To Be Sure”
Here’s the notes from Sundays message and the link to the sermon. Also, to celebrate, we baptized 23 more people and had our 2nd biggest weekend ever at 797 people. WOW! God is up to something in this season of our church. We are celebrating that in the last few months, we’ve baptized 59 people. God is so good!
Main Thought: Do you ever wonder about eternity? Do you ever wonder about what will happen when you die? Does everyone go to heaven? You can leave here today and know. You can leave here today and be sure of what’s in store for you.
-1 Corinthians 2:9 says, “That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”
-For those who love God, what is waiting on the other side of this life is so marvelous, indescribable, and incomprehensible that we can only receive it if we believe it by faith.
-What is heaven like? 1 Corinthians 13:12 says, “We see only a reflection as in a mirror …” So in our limited understanding, here’s a limited preview based on what we know:
–Worship without distraction – It’s where we get to be with Jesus (Philippians 1:23) (Revelation 21:3).
–Serve without exhaustion – We will rule and oversee creation according to our faithfulness as believers on earth (Luke 19:11-27).
–Fellowship without fear – We will fellowship with angels and participate in great celebration with one another over lost souls being found. We will work together and worship together in unity. We will also EAT and laugh regularly while experiencing a myriad of emotions, but no tears. (Hebrews 12:22, Luke 15:7, Luke 6:21, Revelation 21:4).
–Rest without boredom – It will be paradise, visually stimulating with gold, lights and marvelous images, and we will also still honor the Sabbath (Luke 23:43) (Hebrews 4:9-11) (Revelation 21) (Ps. 16:11).
-Life will make more sense – Life and eternity will make more sense, but we still won’t know everything ever. We will be at peace with the Masters plan (1 Peter 1:12, Romans 1:18-2:16).
-My question for you is, don’t you want to be sure you’re going there? Because, sadly, there is another alternative …
-Nearly 72% of Americans believe heaven is a place, just as New York, Chicago, or Philadelphia is a place. Also, a majority of these same Americans believe they will go there. However, only 58% of Americans believe in hell.
-We’ve all heard of hell, what is it? The more popular language comes from Matthew 13:50 “and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” But I don’t want to focus on the fire necessarily. I want to focus on something more important —
-Ultimately, “hell” is being separated from God’s love, mercy, joy, and peace … forever. Whatever hell is or isn’t, we know for sure it’s being away from God and heaven.
-2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”
-Why do people go there? Especially when God doesn’t want them to go … It’s a simple. They never believed or repented. That’s really all it takes.
-Heaven is for all! John 14:2-3 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?
LET’S BE SURE …
-John 14:6 “Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”
-For us to make heaven home, we must believe in JESUS as the Son of God and as the one-true-God.
–We don’t just believe in Jesus to save us from hell, but we believe in Him to experience our very best life while we await heavens glory.
-Romans 10:9 “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
-Romans 3:23 “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.”
-God is a holy God and sin separates us from HIM. But Romans 5:20 says, “God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant.”
-In other words, because there’s sin, there’s also grace. And all we have to do to receive the grace is ASK.
-Acts 3:19 “Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away.”
-You’re not going to heaven because of the good things you do and you’re not going to hell because of the bad things you’ve done. You are ONLY saved by GRACE [God’s immeasurable love and your acknowledgement of sin] through faith [your belief and declaration that Jesus is the Son of God, He died on the cross, and rose again].
-For many, their love for God increases as their knowledge of God deepens. The more we know Him, the more we love Him, His church, and His plan.
-Repentance is both confession [to God] and a willingness to TURN the other way from the current lifestyle. It’s God’s kindness that leads us to repentance that leads us to willingly lay our lives down for something better.
-Acts 2:38 “Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
-Baptism is an outward declaration of an inward transformation.
-In other words, if you’ve believed are ready to receive, your next step is to publicly declare that Jesus’ home is your heart.
-Baptism is the symbolic illustration of the OLD man dying (on the cross with Jesus) and the new man being raised (from the grave). It’s that beautiful, important and significant!