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May 1, 2021 12:00 am
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This is true for a new generation radio and now the man who preached in 50 states and 50 days beaker writer, and advocate for Christian apologetics Dr. Alex McFarlane how are we to live in expectation of Christ's return.
What is the appropriate mindset the right posture to maintain as we think about the return of Jesus and the end of time will the Bible make some promises regarding this in first Thessalonians 523 to 24 in the New Testament it says and may your spirit soul and body be kept sound and blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it you know it says that God will keep our body soul and spirit sound. That means preserved blameless. We are declared righteous through our faith in Christ until the coming of our Lord Jesus, and I want to talk about that on today's program living in expectation of Christ's return and and really for things to aspire to or to keep in mind for things to aim toward as we anticipate our meeting with Jesus, you know, as I record this today.
I had a very very special day.
I spent a great portion of the day with a hero that I've admired for many years.
Some of your good to know this name for about three hours today. I was with a man named Arthur blessed. Do you remember that name Arthur blessed was very famous in the 70s 80s and 90s. He walked around the world carrying the cross in the 60s he really was the man that God used to ignite what we call the Jesus movement a great awakening and he was in California.
He had been a pastor in a few churches, but on the Sunset strip in California.
Arthur blessed had a coffee house for young people call his place amidst all the bars and all the dives Arthur opened up a Christian coffeehouse in they had worship and church seven nights a week and they led thousands of young people to Christ and that really ignited the Jesus movement from around 1967 to about 1975 and I had the privilege of going to Arthur's house in Denver Colorado. And what an amazing man of God. He's 81 years old now and somewhat feeble, but he showed me his archives of the cross that was on the wall at the coffee shop and he pulled it down off the wall and he walked across America to Washington DC. Then he went to Ireland and then over the next 50 years would go to 300 nations. He went through jungles where he was told that it's impossible for a human to cross through and live the snakes and the animals will get you and yet he survived and was was fine and led tens of thousands of people to Christ along the way. Arthur showed me pictures of him praying with Yasser Arafat and Moammar Qaddafi in for five popes and Billy Graham in dozens of elected officials and presidents and people like Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones and Janis Joplin and the stars of Hollywood and then he spent time in Syria and across the deserts of Egypt. Interestingly, this pilgrim and I would urge you to learn about Arthur blessed him and his stories so inspiring. He said that when he would go into the Middle Eastern countries, Israel and even places like North Korea several times and North Africa and Morocco in the intensely Islamic parts of the world where missionaries can't go and yet he was treated royally. Just wherever he went, and share the gospel. He did say that really two of the most harsh places against the gospel 25, 30 years ago New York City getting beaten up in Los Angeles California that probably the cities with the most vehement rejection of the cross and the gospel message one was New York City and the on the other was Hollywood, California.
But what a joy to visit with this man and talk about soul winning and talk about evangelism and the things of God and to things that really struck in my mind I want to share them with you. I really wanted to interview Arthur but he was just about to week two to talk but he said this, he said that when we come to Christ. Often times we we think about being saved and not going to hell and that is part of the gospel that if a person trusts Christ, their sins are forgiven their names in the Lamb's book of life and they'll go to heaven, not hell, but Arthur said of as the time is going on decades of knowing Jesus. He's of the greatest glory of salvation is not merely having the assurance that you're going to miss judgment. He said the great thing about salvation is the intimate presence of Jesus every hour of every day.
And now that he can't travel and speak as he did for decades. He said here every day that the presence of Jesus is so powerful and so sweet and so wonderful and I and III know what he means. And one of the things that we just love to shout and proclaim to everybody is the beautiful thing about being a born-again believer.
Yes you will go to heaven when you leave this world. Yes, God hears your prayers and he will never leave you nor forsake you. And you can trust in him and he will make straight your paths. One of the wonderful things about being saved that the world needs to know is that Jesus is that friend who sticks closer than a brother that if you're a believer. Christ is with you and the intimate comforting, empowering presence of Jesus is a joy all day every day, but Arthur blessed said this to.
He said that he would win souls and he faithfully served Jesus courageously and in the man went 43,000 miles on foot. No human in history has ever traveled around the world multiple times around the equator around the whole planet sharing the gospel.
But here's part of what his motivation was thinking about the return of Christ, that Christ is coming back in her first Thessalonians 313 says of of Christ's return quote.
May he make your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints. Amen. Not a think about this Christ return is a reality. It is a comfort. It is a motivation.
Christ's return is really an incentive because there are the promises related to his return.
Really a warning that we are to be without spot or blemish.
We are to stay faithful would be ready Thursday to come back after this brief break and will talk about for things to aspire to.
As we anticipate our meeting with Jesus. America today is like a patient struggling to live yet is being forcibly euthanized by her quote doctors, the life force within the patient fighting for survival is the honest citizens like yourself team of quote caregivers are the local and national leaders actually contributing to the demise of the patient economy is crashing crime is exploding. The Constitution is being abolished the assault on America how to defend our nation before it's too late by Alex Farland has one single purpose to get you prepared the real source of America's current problems that no one else is talking about and what you can do now to face tomorrow. Regardless of what tomorrow brings. The assault on America how to defend our nation before it's too late. Available now at Amazon or Barnes & Noble and local Christian bookstore welcome to the podcasts I hear you. We are so excited that you joined us, and this is just going to be a great new podcast dealing with issues around race issues around friendship and how do we deal with the tough issues and also excited to be here with my good friend Alex to do with you Adele in on the I hear you podcast we talk about race. We talk about culture.
We talk about politics, and sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we find resolution and common ground near what's really cool. Not only do we learn new things. We make friends would grow and that's good for all of us with just two friends why why why black and we just invite everyone to come in joy to share with us is a big difference between hearing and listening and show love and look forward to an audience.
Thank you so much for giving us a chance, I hear you with Alex and Odell every get you podcast for apologetics, resources, books by Alex McFarland and to find out where Alex is speaking to visit Alex McFarland.com that's the truth for a new generation were talking about the end of time, and we opened up with first Thessalonians 523 to 24 about our bodies so in spirit, being Blameless, you know, we are three parts were made in the image of God and God is a Trinity father-son Holy Spirit, now human beings are not God.
We are not the the divine creator that Christ is we are the creature were made, but we are made in God's image and there's a certain Trinity to man body soul and spirit in the New Testament talks about really that the part of you that lives forever, somewhere is your spirit in your body. Of course you know what your body is your tissue flesh and bones your soul. We often talk about the soul being in your soul will go to heaven but really the word for soul is the word psyche which is your mind, your knowledge, your will, your emotions and all of these things are beneficiaries in Christ's redemption. Your body soul and spirit that one day you'll get a glorified body but even right now and I think Paul was alluding to this when he talked about renewing the inner man your soul and spirit can be strengthened and renewed day by day as you feed on the word of God that nothing about these things, it says you'll be kept sound. The word is really preserved. First Thessalonians 523 in the original Greek, may your spirit soul and body be kept sound implication is a preservative that is administered from without and awarding their sound really means guarded over.
Do you know that the Lord Jesus is guarding over you right now. He really is and it says that we are to be kept blameless.
Now, this very same word is found in first Thessalonians 313 and it means without fault or defect is not something in the eyes of God. Your blameless if your born-again believer because the righteousness of Christ has been attributed to you without fault or defect on blame a bowl, says first Thessalonians 523 that the Greek word there really means.
Above reproach because, morally pure. Do you know in the eyes of God. Your born-again believer even you might struggle, you might stumble.
We all do but you are above reproach because you have been declared righteous in the eyes of God, and that word, it's interesting.
It's also found in Philippians 1, verse 10, this word appears, and read it right now. It's a fascinating verse because it means in this context appropriate.
It says that you may approve the things that are excellent and that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ without offense.
If your born-again believer and so we often beat ourselves up and we say oh I blow it all the time and enough messed up again. Yes, and that's why in the Bible is first John 19. Now we often use first John 19. In the context of evangelism but it's really written to believers and it says if we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. So as we anticipate our meeting with Jesus we are to stand in our soundness letting God preserve us guard over us, guide us to understand that in the eyes of God. Your blameless your declared righteous that your true identity. We are to live like it and then first Thessalonians 313 blameless, listen in holiness. Now the word is really sanctification you know this word I'm sure sanctification to be set apart set aside in Strong's concordance.
This speaks to quote the Holy Spirit's influence preparing the believer for eternity. They think about that the longer you walk with Jesus, the more the old things don't even have a pull on you anymore or they shouldn't.
At least the always the all behaviors but even the old emotions in the way you act in the way you react, you are more and more and more sanctified, brought into conformity with the nature of Jesus and I love what Strong's concordance, says the Holy Spirit's work of preparing the believer for eternity.
It easy God's sanctification in your life that brings the gift of holiness. It means that you can fully enjoy eternal life now and in the hereafter. Now regarding holiness. We really ought to be living in such a way that when we do transition from out of this world and to heaven. There should not be a lot of culture shock that nothing about that. There a lot of believers. And yes, they trusted Christ in your born-again but they've not really shaped their mind in accord with Scripture.
They're not really living that new life and when they leave this world and there's some in the presence of the Lord in heaven is going to be a big change because here on earth.
There hasn't been changed. Sanctification means were were doing our utmost to be in conformity to the word of God, in conformity to the nature of Jesus and were letting the Holy Spirit lead our lives and do the driving sweat sanctification is supposed to be about and then finally were supposed to be pure you mentioned. Philippians 110. There's a word in that verse for purity to which we have been called we are. As CS Lewis said there is a purity to which all believers are called. It says that we may approve the things that are excellent and be sincere and without offense until the day of Jesus Christ. The wording in Philippians 110 really means uncontaminated as a believer are you on contaminated or is the, the stench of the world still about you may be your vocabulary. Your language the way that you talk and the way that you fly often you lose your temper.
There is a joy friend in a life surrendered submitted. I'm gonna say subjugated by the Holy Spirit. Now, as we think about the return of Christ as we look toward the end of history and we may be close.
It is time to get our house in order. It is time to be prepared.
Revelation 2220 he who testifies to these things says yes I am coming soon. Jesus Christ is coming back need to be ready yesterday to get a break coming up and we've got several very exciting announcements. So stay tuned to this edition of truth for a new generation Alex McFarland here talking about living in expectation of Christ return. Don't go away. Join Alex McFarland for spiritual awakening in our times studying the book of acts. June 25-27 in the Billy Graham training center at the Cove near Asheville, North Carolina. Acts records the first days of the early church tells the story of a powerful spiritual awakening among Jews and Gentiles alike. The book of acts also contains personal lessons about revival for believers like us today in the seminar. Alex will examine God's principles for spiritual renewal and evangelism that work in every age, including ours, you also discover how you can personally walk in the power and joy of the Holy Spirit, regardless of your circumstances to register for spiritual awakening in our times studying the book of acts with Alex McFarland June 25-27 go to the Cove.org seminar packages include options for seminar meals and lodging.
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We are talking about living in expectation of Christ return. Hey, I the time is getting close. I want to remind everybody that I will be at the Cove, the Billy Graham training center in western North Carolina June 25-27. We go to the book of acts. The New Testament book of acts will have the opportunity to fellowship with believers from all over North America will pray together we will join our hearts and our voices in intercession and I would love you to be there. There are probably just a few seats left. You can go to the Cove.org THECO VE the Cove.org and Google my name Alex McFarland or look for the June 25-27 seminar on the book of acts would love you to be there. Also, on my own website which is Alex McFarland.com. We got a lot a lot of events that are on the calendar and coming up.
And so, check out calendar and I want to remind everybody we have got another truth for a new generation conference coming up October 15-17 now Mark your calendar. We haven't done a lot of promotion yet but will go to be in Myrtle Beach South Carolina working with first Baptist Church of Myrtle Beach and several other ministries down there were going to have a conference one of our TNG events October 15-17, and one of the things we can focus on is reaching millennial's for Christ.
My heart breaks when I hear about the twentysomethings that so many. Maybe they grew up in church, but they've walked away from God. Or maybe they are completely secular. We must have God move among the twentysomethings and younger and so were going to talk about that and we're going to bring together some speakers to equip you and your church to make a difference and so be in prayer. Please for the fall of 20, 21, the transfer new generation event in Myrtle Beach. It'll be October 15-17 will tell you much more about that, but right now living in expectation of Christ return. You know, by the way, this is the subject of eschatology and time things and and I want to make a point here to say that the Bible makes no provision whatsoever for reincarnation or what some people say quote" a second chance I've had people tell me that well you know if they didn't make it in this life quote." They would come back multiple times, but the Bible says in Hebrews 927 to 28 and as it is appointed to man once to die, but after this the judgment, so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many, and to them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin under salvation. Jesus is coming back. I mean really think about this Israel is in their land. There's instability around the world every day were were watching the calls for a cashless society going to crypto currencies look the masked mandate of the last year year and 1/2 shows how governments and culture itself will pressure people into doing things and friend there's there's really nothing that stands in the way of prohibiting the rapture from Taking Pl. in Christ calling out the church seven years of tribulation will ensue. Matthew 2430 talks about the day that he would return and he said, quote the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory in Zechariah 14, three through four says Jesus will stand on the Mount of olives, the Mount of olives will split into Jesus will ride to earth from heaven on a white horse and will rightly and victoriously assume his place as King of Kings and Lord of lords.
Revelation 1911 through 16 know it's interesting just as the Red Sea was parted and just as the Mount of olives will cleave and split into.
There is a line of division going down through history and look that the line of demarcation by which we delineate human beings. It's not fundamentally male and female, although that is objectively true God.
Genesis 1 2627 God made male and female friends.
Transgender is and is faults but listen to this. The fundamental division criteria of history is not rich or poor, Easter West, Jew, Gentile Oriental Occidental look it all boils down to, are you saved have you trusted Christ when history concludes there will be those that received Jesus and those that didn't.
And so we are to live in expectation of Christ's return. And for those of us that know the Lord. We are to help others find the Lord and as Arthur Blessed said we are to be committed to evangelism. You know what when I was with Arthur were talking about the end of time, and he was talking about that in one of his books the cross bearer we read a little portion here. Arthur Blessed said there are many who bear the cross but they do not follow the Lord that come for salvation, but they're not really surrendered to Jesus. They forget that salvation is not merely a future admittance to heaven, but is an immediate enjoyment of the presence of Jesus here in our life now has a friend, as our guide, taking up the cross is but an incident is indispensable indeed, but is not the whole of our duty. We are to hunger to be a true cross bearer following Jesus and we are to overcome the conflict between Jesus and the world between Jesus and religion overcome the conflict between Jesus and myself. We are a Pilgrim every day since Arthur Blessed allowing Jesus to be at work in us and he said, be assured. The process can be painful and it really can. But you know what's even more painful than the discipline of discipleship that pain that many will experience of meeting Christ unprepared. Are you ready are you sound and blameless and holy and set apart and letting Jesus the city Lord God, Messiah, teacher King. He is the, the Lord of all that you are. I pray for you and I hope you're praying for us.
I hope you're following what we believe God is telling us to teach and proclaim that we are to be pure and blameless because we will meet Christ face-to-face one day.
May God bless you. May God be with you. Stand strong for the trip. TNG radio is made possible by the friends of Alex McFarland ministry, PO Box 10231 is Burrell, NC 27404. That's PO Box 10231, Greensboro, NC 27404 call us at 877 yes God one that's 877 yes, God in the number one or give firstname.lastname@example.org while you're there, listen the program. Our guys read Alex's blog invite Alex to speak at your event or contact Alex with a question or comment, Alex McFarland.com. Thanks for listening today and join us again next time. As we bring you more true for a new generation TNG radio