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September 20, 2021 8:00 am
As an Encouraging Word for you and me today. By late Dr. Don Wilton in a message on opportunity as we open the Bible to get another open to you as well connecting with great resources like is this the end of that and more are on our website at tewonline.org OIG GW online.no I Dr. Don Wilton lost opportunity. I think we can all identify with lost opportunities in Hebrews chapter 1 gives to us a smorgasbord. I mean you are a feast that is incomparable and there is a sense in which God when he gives to us. Hebrews chapter 1 tells us all about the Lord Jesus Christ.
He says I want you to feast your eyes and your heart upon my son the Lord Jesus Christ. I wanted tell you that what Jesus Christ can give to you because of who he is, is something that you cannot put into human perspective. And so it is that we arrive in Hebrews chapter 2 in verse one. I want you to see what is said by God through his spirit in Hebrews chapter 2 in verse one. This is what he says we must, by the way, this whole savings is an imperative. It's not an option. We must pay more careful attention.
Therefore, to what we have heard in order that or increase.
All this is an interesting syntactical arrangement cure what it literally means is that you and I must take special note of the things that we have heard in this particular context in chapter 1, and for us here at First Baptist Church over the lost 11 zombies about Jesus Christ. We must pay careful attention to these things that we could hear what he puts he says so that we do not drift away last in case. These things might slip through our fingers, and by the way, that were the drift carries with it the connotation of God sending a lifeboat to a sinking ship, providing us with the means to be rescued and we look at it and we read recognizably site is a lifeboat. We know that our ship was sinking, but we don't do anything about it. We say well I'll just stick with the ship a little bit longer until it becomes too late and that boat sinks and the suction sections are so why am we drown. And even though I live boat has been saved our way and we recognize the lifeboat. We didn't take use of that opportunity and he seems to play careful attention to the things that you are hearing list at any time these things about which you have heard concerning Jesus Christ just foster your fingers. You never appropriate. By the way, did you know that there are basically three groups of people in the world and I think we could say that of ourselves to those we worship the Lord. Number one there all lost numbers of people who have lost numbers of people who heard the message of the gospel.
Perhaps no true statement made then today because in today's day and age with television and modern telecommunications. The gospel is being preached to more people than at any other time in the history of the world God has seen fit to posses message divorce numbers of people there all lost numbers of people who have that's what the writing here is talking about. He saying to those who have pay attention to operative words. Are you ready set up pay attention, you see some people set up for teachers love those two words set up by attention. I remember one man coming to tell me that his wife was a teacher and when she came home she would told him to set up by the danger. I think it has merit.
On June set up pay attention and have gone by his spirit is speaking particularly to people like you and me who fall into this first category and the people all over the world who have heard the message, to his boss numbers of people who have heard the message and have received the message.
I can account for literally thousands even here at First Baptist Church in Spock.
I'm grateful to tell you that not because of anything that would pertain to my own merit that I'm numbered amongst the second category. I'm one of those people that have heard the message and I have received it.
That how did I receive it. I heard about Jesus and I received it by doing three things.
Number one I repented of my sin cannot receive it unless you're willing to say you're sorry for your sin, to repent of your sin number two. I have heard it and I have received it back on facing my sin to the Lord Jesus Christ. See that's what chapter 1 is all about the all sufficiency of Jesus Christ.
The superiority of the Lord Jesus Christ. Many people today say well you know you can get to God by some other means. Note, the Bible says Jesus Christ is the way the truth and the life no man can come in to the father but through him. How have I heard and received the message I have repented of my sin. Number two I have confessed my sin to Jesus Christ because he's the one who died upon the cross for me. Number three I have trusted in him by faith Don Johnny glad about that on to spacey off to having gone through chapter 1 of the book of Hebrews lauded deep things about God.
We never again understand everything about God and God tells me that I cannot only hear the word but I can receive the word not based upon my understanding, but upon the expression of my faith that I'm willing to accept what God says about himself through the Lord Jesus Christ and that I'm willing to receive him into my heart that is modified so there are boss numbers referred there are boss numbers you've heard and received with number three there are boss numbers are good and rejected the message that frames God here is speaking to all three groups. I've heard some people say well this is just for those who don't believe. I believe this is for people who have heard and have done nothing. I believe this is people who heard and done something and I believe this is for those who heard and rejected. That will leave a remember the Jewish context in which this was placed. Remember that God here is speaking to a people who have the things concerning the Messiah, some of whom had received Jesus Christ as the Messiah, as the Lord of their lives. In this idea and some of continued in their unbelief and some actually literally rejected him, so it's no wonder that when you come here in verse two, chapter 2, verse one that we can sense the urgency with which the writer to the Hebrews rights under the inspiration of the spirit of God, I beg you to pay attention to the things that you've heard concerning Jesus Christ latest you lose your opportunity. I want to speak to you this morning about a lost opportunity. As I began to pray and as I began to prepare this message some weeks ago.
I also put Lord to give to me a fresh understanding of the significance of that phrase listed anytime we should drift away cause God to write upon my heart the deep spiritual significance of what it means to have salvation in the palm of your hand. And yet for it to slip through your fingers.
You know that there are some people in America who got Jost Jost enough religion to prevent from getting the real thing. I've had people say to me some time now. I'm religious question I want to ask is this all your Christian are you a Jesus follower folks. I'm not religious.
I'm not interested in religion I'm interested in a personal one on one relationship with Jesus Christ because that's what he gives to me. And that's what he gives to you and so I ask myself the question what possibly can be.
The close of the lost opportunity and God put on my heart. I things that can cause you to lose an opportunity for Christ to give your heart and life to him. Now there are many more but for the sake of this morning, and for this message in our Bible study today I'm going to share with you what I consider to be the eight top reasons close as to why people can lose the opportunity to have their sins forgiven their names written in God's book in heaven, and why God forbid that there are literally hundreds of thousands of people today who have died and have gone to a classless eternity and have lost the opportunity to be born again to be saved forever. There are eight potential reasons Joe. They are number one disease disease can present to you. I lost opportunity. I don't necessarily take any joy in talking about disease but beloved friends today you and I know very well the disease is all around us everywhere, not just because I'm cost of a local congregation. But every week you're not all confronted by disease. No matter what modern conveniences. No matter the brilliance of medical personnel, no matter the invention of all kinds of drivers no matter the abilities of people come out of the books that have been written disease is rampant among our people. It seems to me that hardly a day goes by in Spartanburg that you and I don't hear of somebody else being diagnosed with heart disease and with cancer with terminal diseases with diseases that affect us in body in heart and in my and I believe that when the writer to the Hebrews under the inspiration of the spirit of God turns to us and says I beg you, that you would pay attention to the things that you are hearing concerning Jesus Christ listed anytime.
These things should slip through your fingers. I believe he was speaking within the reality of the context of the world in which we live.
I pray beloved frames that none of us would be ravaged by disease. I pray that God's grace would be upon our people. Please forgive the interruption to Dr. Don Wilton to remind you we are here for you connecting 24 hours a day on this phone number 8668 Chinatown stored in your cell 866899673 will connect with one of us happy to talk with listener pray and connect with wonderful resources like the book in Dr. Don Wilton about his time with Dr. Billy Graham will find those details online as well at tewonline.org G, now a great teaching with Dr. Don Wilton. I pray that not one of us would wake up tomorrow morning and hear those graded words that would alter out and and would set us on a different course in a different direction. I never believed that we ought to give up hope and I believe that sometimes diseases introduced into people's lives to get their attention.
As far as God is concerned, and there are many questions that I know are not sick, when it comes to the Metro disease and Almighty God. But I'm going to tell you today my friends that disease can rob you of your opportunity to give your heart to Jesus. Number two, number two disaster disaster can cause a lost opportunity. You might say to me pasta what he read.
I've shared this illustration with you. When I shared with you some of those of you that a verdict you're going to say. Foster why I'm going to tell you why, because this was one of those things in my life that affected me very very deeply. It involved my friend Brody green. You've heard me talk about them. If you haven't, you need to hear about Brody. Brody was a dear man 20 years ago when I was just 30 he turned 50, I thought he was an old man.
Little did I know, Brody lived in New Orleans member of Calvary Baptist Church in New Orleans, Louisiana. Brody was a very fine man. I'd gotten to know him.
He was involved in my ministry at the age of 15. Brody green retired blotted listing so much. He was a very willing to do man had a beautiful home lovely family had grandchildren yet a lovely home. Donna, Gulf Shores, Alabama. Not any that he had one of the sweetest spirits that you'd ever mantle been around in your entire life and on Friday morning I went to Brody Green's retirement party.
He was 50 years old Saturday morning. Brody woke up on the West Bank of New Orleans got out a step ladder and climbed the stepladder to work on the doctors he needs home.
We still don't know what happened. Brody, but evidently the stepladder slipped and Brody fell off their bladder landed on his back, hitting his head on the concrete and three hours later, Brody green died, folks. One day when I get to heaven on the Nazca, Lord, Lord, questions.
I don't understand one of the things I'm very grateful for is that Brody green love the Lord Jesus and I have not a doubt in my mind that he went straight to heaven to be with the Lord, you know folks every week in Spartanburg. I open the pages of the Spartanburg Herald, June, one of the things that I do is I always look closely at the obits because it involves a lot of my people. Every time I see pictures and writeups of people.
My heart goes out to families upright for the but none like when I open up the obits and I see a picture of a young schoolboy from Norman high burdens will bring Spartanburg high Gaffney high when I see a young kid who's been killed on the highways and folks, my heart breaks for those families and I love them and I pray for them. Those moms and dads, but the one in question are always lost in my own heart. I wonder if that young man was in church on Sunday and I wonder what he did with that which he heard you see friends disaster can rob us of the greatest opportunity you'd say to me pasta don't be melodramatic. No sir, we know that this is what life is all about and that is why I'm so glad that we worship the Lord together and that is why I'm so glad that in all three services. Today we mean full like this impact our and there's been such an incredible spirit. That's why I'm so glad that we have the word of God. That's why I'm so grateful to the Lord that I can read that we must pay more careful attention to what we are hearing in order that we don't face the possibility of losing the lifeboat God has given to us in Christ Jesus. What possibly could be the cause of a lost opportunity disease and disaster number three divorce.
Some of you going to look at me and say foster walk in the world are you talking about. How can divorce. Rob me of the opportunity to give my heart to Jesus Christ for what I'm about to tell you has nothing to do with you. It has nothing to do with your divorce, but it has everything to do with God. But you know that God is divorced that might come as a surprise to some of you that you know that God is divorced.
I'm going to show you turn with me very quickly to Jeremiah chapter 3 of you wondering about that'll perplexed about that. You need to read it for yourself Jeremiah in the Old Testament in chapter 3, one to read to you. One of the most staggering of all statements that God made concerning his relationship with the children of Israel. Jeremiah chapter 3 in verse six, during the reign of King Josiah. The Lord said to me, have you seen what faithless Israel has done she has gone up on every high hill and on the every spreading tree and has committed adultery. I thought that often. She had done all of that she would return to me, but she did not and her unfaithful sister Judah solely because verse eight I gave faithless Israel first certificate of divorce and send her away because of all her adulteries. I want you to listen carefully this morning. Divorce will rob you of your opportunity to give your heart to Jesus Christ. The good news is that in chapter 1 of the book of Hebrews, God tells us how he has eliminated or erased that certificate of divorce. Did you know that because of your sin as well as with the certain of Israel that God is a certificate of divorce he put them away. He turned his back on them. He savored any kind of time with the children of Israel as he does with all people who have sinned against God, and he said if you want me to erase to burn up to tear up the cost away that certificate.
Of divorcement the way in which you can do that is by putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ, who has made what purification forces that's what we read about in chapter 1.
So what can close a lost opportunity disease disaster divorce, full distinction distinction. I'm going to just come over here for a moment distinction will cause you to lose your opportunity. That is why folks in America delight we go to pray for Obama you can stand in the average American church today and tell people about Jesus and nobody will respond, but you can come with me and go to Brazil or to Ecuador or India or China or Japan or to some remote place in this world and stand where people have nothing and they will literally be falling over themselves to try to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. Now why in America. Is it so hard to introduce people to Jesus whereas country Dell coming by the thousands distinction. Who needs God, I want you to hear what the writer to the Hebrews and site pay attention to the things that you are hearing listed anytime. These things should slip through your fingers. What can close that lost opportunity disease disaster divorce distinction about the generation I looked up the meaning of degeneration.
It literally means physical and mental deterioration, degeneration, mental and physical deterioration will cause you to lose an opportunity to see folks, it's not just about the dramatic it's the fact that you and I can readily just simply lose our mental capacity to consider the things that we have heard concerning Jesus Christ. What possibly could close a lost opportunity. Number six, defiance, defiance, I guess all of us have had opportunities to be impacted and there are some things folks you hear me talk about until the Lord calls me home. I made that decision long time ago I been among clusters you write down you know that I never write down any illustrations because I know God's get somebody out there who needs to hear something we must pay more careful attention. Therefore, to what we are hearing listed anytime we should let them slip what possibly could cause us to lose an opportunity disease disaster divorce distinction, degeneration, defiance, how about delay delay. I've had people say to me will pasta. Why do you bother with invitations over time. Don't get so carried away tell people to go home and think about folks we've got people joining churches all over the place.
Based upon the fact that there is no pressure, the neighborhood that would put any pressure on you. I like that we don't have any pressure.
I will go to church and have any pressure. People say to me pasta.
She wouldn't put fresh listen if I could put pressure on you to give your heart to Jesus on people of same to me over the years I've never heard it in our congregation, but I've had people say to me in precise people. These stories and things because you shouldn't scare people. And if I could stay here in the kingdom of God. Don't delay one death is all around us. The obvious one. Folks, here's the issue. This this is what the writer sees pay attention to something you might lose your opportunity as you've heard Dr. Wilton preach about this opportunity.
Now, as he steps into the studio. Open your heart what he wants to share next are you ready to give your heart and life to the Lord Jesus Christ. Why don't you pray this prayer with me right now.
Dear God, I know that on the center and I know that Jesus died for me on the cross today. I repainted my sin and by faith I receive you into my heart. In Jesus name, my friend. I welcome you today into the family of God. This is exciting news. If you just responded or prayed alone to put some free resources in your hands.
If you'll call us at 866-899-WORD.
That's 866-899-WORD 9673 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org OR G as a matter fact you can sign up for the daily Encouraging Word.
Dr. done with the details. You not love to be a part of daily devotional love to be able to sing The Encouraging Word daily devotion to God sees to each one of us through his word every day. You can become part of that and receive one your self from me just go online to TW online.org T. W online.org and get copy of The Encouraging Word devotion. Today, next time on The Encouraging Word Dr. Don Wilton. His topic is this great salvation. I hope you'll join us. Between now and then. Let's stay connected on our website at TW online