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August 19, 2022 7:00 pm
Dr. Jason Ormiston continues the series entitled “I Believe,” with a message from John 11:25-26.
Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville South Carolina today were continuing a study series based on the creed the students recite each day in chapel services, which is a summary of the doctrines of our Christian faith. Today's sermon will be preached by Jason Ormiston will be teaching us about the gift of eternal life. We think about eternal life we think about the fact that it goes on forever and ever that it is a guess it's hard for us to put our arms around that concept. Also, we do realize that a lot of people have made a lot of money talking about what heaven is like soda to unpack that for you in is realistic away as we possibly can we take this phrase the gift of eternal life. I want to consider this with me. It is unmerited.
We don't do anything to deserve it. We don't work her way into the right to enter into heaven. We are offered it freely and it's an amazing gift. I sat next to one of the dads at a basketball game last night and he is one who used to be a drug dealer and I've been strictly a conversations with him. He is in radically saves back in the 80s and return to me. He said Jason does it ever just make you pause to think that we have this wonderful gift of eternal life and preaching on that tomorrow. Yes, in fact, recently it's been given a reason for pause is it is why mean he said what.
Why did I receive no asking that same question why you and you been a recipient of the gift that anytime what's the best material gift that you've ever received. Think about that with the very best material get something that maybe it's I don't know and bring engagement ring. Maybe it's tuition.
I have a big white van be homeschooled and that we drive around that was given to us 10 passenger van was teaching in Old Testament messages class couple years ago a gentleman who was visiting rapidly coming to PBC, Baptist Church came up to me after class and yes we do want a car.
I mean I think my kids need a car or do you want a car said I are you giving it away. He said yes but I'm particular to Lexus.
I sent only to the dealership right after class and I what are you kidding me.
He said no I'm serious I want to do it for you and I had to teach the next. Alright, I thought of maybe finding us, but I way I taught and dealership anybody Alexis I have been involved in church ministries whenever we get very far point of having to leave the building. Your buildings cost a lot of money. Family Baptist Church inner-city North Minneapolis we needed rebuilding the price for the building was $900,000. We had nothing to offer. My dad passed to their received a phone call from a former pastor who, through a series of tragic events receive millions of dollars and said I want to give you $1 million. I planted another church and there was another need for a building.
We had a pastor in their conversations. I will let you have this building as soon as I die, you can have build and currently and we currently as members of PBC. Those either get a 10. There were looking for God to do something great and I can tell you he is in the works right now I do know what it's like to receive unbelievable unmerited favor, but nothing compares to the gift I received when I was six years of age and my dad told me about eternal life and remind you a familiar verses in John 316 for God so loved the world that he gave his only gotten son that whosoever believes in him should not perish but should have everlasting life.
I will remind you of Ephesians 289 for by grace are ye saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God not of works lest any man should boast. If you're saved today.
It's the greatest gift you could ever receive. It's a gift. Don't forget that also want to know. It's unending, it's eternal now. If you have your Bible help you do turn with me over to John chapter 11 what you notice something that I think is a reality for all of us. We hear this idea of eternal life.
We struggle to understand it or to even believe it. Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. But before he does that he has a conversation I want you to join me in reading this conversation John chapter 11 verses 25 and 26 Jesus said to her being Martha. I am the resurrection and the life he that believe it to me, though he were dead, yet shall he live in. I love this question.
And whosoever liveth and believe in me shall never die. Believe this now. This you hear people like me.
We recite the creed all the time and it says that we have this gift of eternal life, but do you really believe it's good to go on and on and on and on all grasp this concept in first Thessalonians 414 he referred to those who slap in Jesus. They went to sleep in Jesus as a euphemism as a picture of death for you and for me as we died in Jesus is not the end of our existence. Existence continues and that existence is a wonderful existence.
If you're wondering if there's this thing called soul sleep or remind you that Jesus himself said his daughter Bible open to John 11 Stan your eyes back up to verse 11 there is a statement here. These things said he and after that she set under them, our friend Lazarus sleep with but I go that I may awake him out of his sleep the disciples of the Lord if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death, but they thought that he spoke of taking a rest and sleep.
This rest of sleep is not that you're laying in the grave waiting to be up with Jesus, to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. This is a wonderful experience death has lost its sting.
Yet I want to realize that eternity goes on forever and forever and forever to try to help illustrate this. I've asked my son to give me a hand.
Judah can you help me out buddy. This is an illustration that no doubt some of you have seen before.
And if you're wondering what's he doing arising in school homeschooled number so having sex but it will happen right to report on this one. If you loosen the rope on the other side there's a couple things yet it's been over from thank you but I couple things to keep in mind one. It's not my illustration. It's been viewed by over a million people.
Francis Chan, I saw the first time when one ID consented to make the other thing is you can tell I'm a professor here. I'm on a budget, there's a knot in the rope is not supposed to have with the buyer about 200 bucks to buy the like, that I need so just go with its pretend that the rope goes on forever and ever and wraps around the world.
Alright it just goes on and on.
What we do in this piece right here. This yellow pieces yellow portion is our lives through life. This is the extent of and this is where keeps going and going and going and going and going. We spend our lives obsessing over how to live this part of our lives so that we can retire and have these and you know just relax and do what we can to make ourselves comfortable and a lot of people do not understand that what you do now impacts all of eternity. What decisions you make now whether or not you are ready for when the tape stops when you meet God face-to-face when he says, do you know me you believe in me, it determines whether or not you spend eternity on forever and ever in hell or in heaven, and my desire is that you spend eternity in heaven and the other thing is, a lot of times when you make decisions thinking about eternity in mind to make decisions that other people don't understand you give away things and people say what is your problem. Don't you realize or not you have anything left over not telling you I don't get it why people make decisions storing up all sorts of stuff for themselves for later on when the cave and enjoy it when they can be blessings I've been so richly blessed by so many things I love to give things away.
It just gets me excited to get things I'm assuming that Rick also want you to relax but it's unbelievable that uses as a description. If you have thought of heaven and put it in this little box. Then I want you to understand this out with the Bible. That's, in fact, the Bible speaks of having it in these terms and second Corinthians 12 one through six, and refers to it as a garden or paradise. In John 14 one through three. It's a mansion or a house in Revelation chapter 21 verses nine through 27. There is this city, if you think about it in the big picture you're talking about new heavens and a new earth.
This beautiful garden.
I love to make comparisons between heaven and the Garden of Eden and coming down out of the heavens will be a massive city that contains a mansion for you and for me and it's going to be beyond our wildest imagination. So here's some couple of things I want to encourage you to consider writing down first thing heaven will be more wonderful than words can describe encourage and represent heaven will be more wonderful than words can describe report for you. This passage in second Corinthians. And if you have your Bible, you can turn there as well segment is chapter 12 verses one through six is returning there. Most of us have thought of heaven as a place where were going to play it for us in the clouds and that's all you ever thought about that some of you do play hard and we appreciated. I love seeing the heart Clara. So don't take offense if your heart player that's not I'm not on your case and is encouraging that musical notation, but check this out.
Heaven is going to be so much more than sitting around strumming on Paul was taken up into heaven, and he gives this account is set Corinthians 12 one through six is not expedient for me. Doubtless the glory I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord, I knew a man in Christ.
About 14 years ago, whether in the body. I cannot tell whether out of the body.
I cannot tell God know it's such a one was caught up into the third heaven, and I knew such a man, whether in the body or out of the body I cannot… Beats himself and talk about them in the body my body. I don't know. It's mysterious, it's revelations, it's these things that he wants the glory and buddies having a hard time explaining it. Then he makes a statement that he was caught up into paradise. This word for paradise is only found in the Greek language not found in the Hebrew language, but when the Hebrews translated into Greek use the same word to describe the Garden of Eden is as beautiful garden. This wonderful experience. Jesus says to the criminal on the cross. Today you will be with me in paradise.
He says I was caught up in the paradise and heard unspeakable words, which is not lawful for man to honor what an interesting statement that he makes it inexplicable. It's on lawful for me to tell you how wonderful it was, why would he say that perhaps the reason why he said that is because he sat there thinking if I actually let you in on the truth of how great it really is.
You would not want to continue being here right now.
It's that good. And so Paul later talks about in Philippians 1, you would rather die but you'll stay because that's what God wants. It's going to be unbelievably amazing.
Such one I will rely glory out of myself.
I will not more, but in my infirmities for though I would desire to glory shall not be a fool say the truth, but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he see his need to be a hero for me and I right after this on the heels she receives this thorn in the flesh to keep them grounded. Notice also. I texted you it's it's a paradise it's a garden. It's also a mansion. It's his wonderful house. Consider John 14 and notice the verses here in verse one through three, where you find comfort in a run to the dying, to find comfort for food line.
I was just in Asheville on Monday enjoying the gingerbread houses. My wife showed me this place that Chuck sells potato chips in different flavors. We had a great time and we enjoyed every bite. And yet it's not in food that we find comfort ultimate lasting comfort effectively run the food all the time for comfort to be sorely mistaken in the mind of a glutton lined up struggling you will not be content.
The only place we find lasting satisfaction is in Jesus Christ and he encourages us with a bigger picture of having now I use the comfort food as a way for you to listen but I want to connect this just three weeks ago I was at a funeral for a 16-year-old boy who died in a single car accident he was going too fast and ran right into a tree and he went into eternity the funeral. The VA was at first Baptist and Taylor was Taylor's was full of public school students. Most of them unbelievers just in awe. Why would God allow something like this to happen. The only comfort we can really find is in this fact in Jesus Christ. Notice what he says in John 1423 let not your heart be troubled you believe in God believe also in me. In my father's house are many mansions if it were not so I would've told you who owns the mansion God that sees the owner believe him and also trust the architect trust the builder if it were not so I would've told you. I go to prepare a place for you and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you and myself, that where I am there. He made so this is a great source of encouragement as we understand we had looked forward to, but the last thing I want to see. When asked to turn your Bible in your Bible to Revelation chapter 21. Heaven will be more glorious when you could ever imagine. Through the Revelation 21 to wrap it up with this if you start at the beginning of chapter 21 it talks about a new heaven and a new earth, and then a city that comes down if you jump into verse nine it says in there came on to be one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full seven last plagues and talk with me saying, come hither, I will show the bride the lamb's wife. So were looking for the bride of Christ. So John is looking okay. I can't wait to see was bright and then in verse 10 it says and he carried me in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, the bride of Christ is the city of God in you. I okay what is that had to do with anything as you understand what is said here by John in Revelation 21 it blows you away with great joy and anticipation and provide for you an idea within outline that you can go back and look at when it comes to Revelation chapter 21 it will radiate God's glory verses nine through 11, it says the bride is here.
The bride is a city talks about the wedding ceremony in verse 10 it shows us something about the city. It could be like Jasper is to be like a big humongous prism that can reflect and refract light all over the place floating down from heaven in eternity.
It will also illustrate God's sovereignty verses 12 through 14 it talks about something some combinations domination 112 gates were 12 angels very similar to the cherubim that happened to be protecting the garden in Genesis 3 2412 gates with 12 names of the 12 tribes of Israel, and it also has 12 foundation stones with the names of the 12 apostles using why all this description because it shows something about God in his sovereignty he alone is the one that can pull all these groups together to form the people of God from Israel from the church all brought together to worship him. She bestows favor on whom he wants to inner city. If you compare the 12 tribes. The listing of them in the book of Revelation. In Revelation 74 through eight Europe, you'll find that one of the tribes missing is the tribe of Dan with you. Go to Ezekiel 4831 through 34.
The tribe of Dan pictured as part of the city is mentioned, why, why is it Dan found in Revelation 7, but it's found in Ezekiel is it can be found in heaven saying to be found in heaven. The reason why Dan wasn't in there. In Revelation were talking about the hundred and 44,000 witnesses, it's because of the fact that they were the first tribe to fall into idolatry. But in the end God says I will bring them back into the fold. He has that great love and bestows log on whomever he wants to the 12 apostles of you ever wondered.
I thought there were 13 I thought the apostle Paul and the other 12 or maybe Judas is not dead. So maybe Paul replaces juice no wait, there is Matthias. What we do with that one is 13 or 12 motor 12 and so you have to wrestle through the implications. Here's a thought for you. Perhaps I and I I am one that believes that the 12 refer to Matthias is not that Paul is in their Paul is an apostle to the Gentiles so the apostles were those connected to Israel, but God is marvelous in all this and God displays a message through the city. It's the city's conduct is connected to redemptive history connected the garden of Eden connected to the selection of Abraham, God's inclusion of the Gentiles is just unbelievable.
It also highlights God's majesty we find this in verses 15 through 17. The size of the city will be massive outlook on your Bible verse 15 and he had talked with me had a golden read to measure the city and the gates thereof and the laws thereof in the city life foursquare and the length is as large as the Brock and he measured the city with the reed 12,000 furlongs. The length and the breadth and height are equal.
And he measured the walls there of 140 and four cubits, according to the measure of a man that is of the angel only pause and if you have legs only out when the help zone back in this.
What were saying this city floating down from heaven is good to be like a huge prism and it's to be so massive in a cube shape. Its length and width and height are going to be identical dimensions 12,000 furlongs of stadia. It's approximately 1380 miles.
That's about how long it is from here to Fargo, North Dakota. The city's elite shoe, which is to represent.
I believe the inner sanctum of the tabernacle.
To put it in perspective were talking about 1400 miles cube equals 2,000,000 mi.² width of the wall is 216 feet thick and I just want to say that because many times we hear about this city floating down we think about millions and millions of people get saved all reduce dance absence a holy holy won't the Lord God Almighty, I want to get into that, but I'm struggling a bit.
I'm hoping there's a little mortise and tell you there is this is just describing the city which is bigger than you could ever imagine. Look up sometime.
The measurement of the new Jerusalem on you to two minute video. It will blow your mind away. It's all taken from the biblical record. It puts things in perspective. Like Mount Everest small. It is a speck on the city and this is just one city that were to come in and out of the got into the garden to enjoy God it's good to be beyond your wildest imaginations and it's can be beautiful beyond any imagination. Notice verses 18 through 21. It gives us all these different types of stones and I won't break all of these down to tell you that it will remind us of no way a covenant with a rainbow is to be beautiful colors that you can't even begin to imagine how amazing all of these are's body. Stones are connected to the ones found in the garden of Eden in Ezekiel 28 the stones are connected to the ones found in the breastplate of the priest in Exodus 28. So in other words, God has been giving us hints all along that way. It's not about the little yellow car. It's about eternity is to be beyond what you can even begin to imagine. And if you're a believer in Jesus Christ. That's where you're going is good to great notice the last part is, it was to model God's supremacy and I see this in verses 22.
No temple because God's there. There is total allegiance given see supreme over the sun and the moon. Verse 23 supreme over kings and rulers verses 24 through 26 verse 27 and there shall in no wise enter into it anything that the file is neither what sort of work its abominations or maketh a lie, but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life. So we call it's some action to encourage and make sure you're in Atlanta with life.
Are you in it.
Generally only way the same way into the garden house in the city is also Jesus. If you have not received Jesus Christ as your Savior. I would encourage you to embrace them today.
If you have are you living in light of eternity. And here's an excellent praise God for caring enough to craft a special place for you.
John 14 one through three and when encourage also to live in light of eternity. Seek things above.
Colossians 3124 glorify God on earth. All of these things provoke us to ask this question, do I really care what I'm saying this. Am I reminded of these trips because of the software Brad exactly the right of a blog called supple University. He's a Bible teacher, Grace Christian Academy in Knoxville wrote an account of pastor who went home to be with the Lord. Tom Cripe, pastor of Oak Ridge Baptist Church.
He said this, I had a conversation with Jim Greg Tom's wife about the last days of our dear pastors life should mention that he saw wonderful things. I received your permission to write about and share with.
It was last week of Tom's life.
She would be gone by Wednesday evening, the hospital room was quiet time alone with his wife Kim lay quietly gazing at the ceiling, fighting the pain and weakness brought on by the crush of pancreatic cancer. He was tired. His energy was gone.
She was alert and Kim noticed that his eyes were fixed on the scene. Tom stared at the ceiling, looking intently at something Jim seated on the bed beside him, stroked his hair what is it someone you see. His voice was weak, but audible angels. Jim leaned closer, her heart skipped a beat angels. She nodded his head yes. How many are there.
Tom moved his lips quietly as he lifted his two hands counting his finger softly. He turned to give a definitive answer 12. Jim leaned in closer what they look like today look like female angels, unable to talk freely shook his head no female angels.
He clearly nodded his head yes. Then lay back exhausted but enthusiastic. Jim realizes fatigue was struck by his determination and what he was witnessing.
No doubt about it. Tom knew he was seeing angels delay quiet for a time perking up. Upon reading numerous friends and family is a stop by occasionally attempting to converse with growing frustrated. They did not have the energy to order more than a few words or he didn't give up three words he was able to communicate. I love you later on Kim and daughter Allie told me she grew excited and animated when they leaned into here. He explained that he saw something new, something almost indescribable.
He saw colors new colors incredible hues and shades colors not realize on this earth. Possibly the colors of heaven. Tom was adamant that they were unseen by him.
Jim and the family pondered this. He spent his last days with the family around him, quietly adding a word here and there, is he was able then he stopped and looked at the ceiling. His eyes were open, gazing above the group is a different kind of look as if well as if you were listening for something, it became apparent that he was indeed hearing something and he let them know that he was gesturing with something different to hear music him as drawing near United yes what kind of music. Tom beautiful. He whispered, are you familiar with it to recognize the song Kamas quietly. No, replied never heard it before. It's a new song yes replied replied firmly and then another visit by the Angels. Tom saw the Angels as family member stood about him. How many do you see Tom he was weaker but he was determined to let them know once again account them. His fingers 1235. This got all of us considering what was occurring. Tom aligning this with biblical account of heavenly messenger. Jesus related the story of Lazarus he made mention that we saw the beggar die. He was carrying the glory with angels. Think of it, stop and ponder this truth, it was time. Tom's time to have his load carried from Pastor Tom and even tearing a lot of burns in his ministry.
Numerous responsibilities that would test the strength of any pastor is compassion loaded him with responsibility.
Seeing folks who are in physical needed to his desire to show Jesus charged him with preparing messages saturated with chemical truth is oversight of the church and wait on him the financial responsibility of the assembly's outreach vision added the burden of making sure missionaries were being supplied with their necessities visiting counseling, leading speaking, praying, exhorting the available 24 hours a day Tom.
When I was time for the Angels to carry him the father was so precious and camp the way he described well. I wanted to go myself precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants is to get positive about the Psalm.
I mean death is precious. Yes, it's one of those things that we long for its heading into heavenly reception. The portals of real life. The grand celebration of the author, like the family told me that when the last words I heard him say from his lips was while I get the feeling that's what will all be saying is angels come down to escort us to the heavenly realm while the gift of eternal life.
You have it you can receive it and if you do have it live and live.
God pray that you bless us as we apply this truth in Jesus thing I meant you been listening to a sermon preached by Jason Ormiston join us again next week as we continue this series summarizing the doctrines of our Christian faith here on The Daily Platform