End of Time

Will the world end this weekend? The Bible says not even the angels know the day or hour of Jesus’ return. But amid speculation that’s been around for centuries, there are certain timeless truths to which all Christians can cling.

First, we need to be sure we have put our trust in Jesus Christ alone for salvation. “The fact of the matter is… we are all a heartbeat away from eternity,” said Will Graham, grandson of Billy Graham, when asked about recent “doomsday” predictions.

“Whether you stand before God [tomorrow] or whether you stand before Him 50 years from now, is irrelevant in the scope of eternity,” Graham added. “The important thing isn’t when you stand before God; it’s where you stand with God.”

Blessings

Blessings Abound:
Blessings from Abundance

Dr. David Jeremiah

I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.—John 10:10b

Why is it easier to lament the things we don’t have rather than praise God for the things we do have. The latter is the important list, and it’s so long that there’s not enough paper in the world to list all the items that make up the abundance of our blessings. The Bible says that God is abundant in mercy and abundant in kindness (Numbers 14:18; Nehemiah 9:17). He gives us an abundance of peace, and with Him is abundant redemption (Psalm 37:11; 130:7). He abundantly pardons (Isaiah 55:7).

Jesus said, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

” (John 10:10).

Part of stewardship is keeping track of our blessings and counting them daily. Yes, we could also keep a ledger of things we don’t have; but why focus on that? “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:” ( 2 Corinthians 9:8).

Friday Funnies

A man was just waking up from anesthesia after surgery, and his wife was sitting by his side. His eyes fluttered open and he said, “You’re beautiful!” and then he fell asleep again. It had been years since his wife had heard him say that so she stayed by his side. A couple minutes later his eyes fluttered open and he said “You’re cute!” Well, the wife was disappointed because instead of “beautiful” it was “cute.” She said “What happened to ‘beautiful’? His reply was “The drugs are wearing off!”

MATH PROBLEM

Teacher: “If I gave you 2 cats and another 2 cats and another 2, how many would you have?”

Johnny: “Seven.”

Teacher: “No, listen carefully… If I gave you two cats, and another two cats and another two, how many would you have?”

Johnny: “Seven.”

Teacher: “Let me put it to you differently. If I gave you two apples, and another two apples and another two, how many would you have?”

Johnny: “Six.”

Teacher: “Good. Now if I gave you two cats, and another two cats and another two, how many would you have?”

Johnny: “Seven!”

Teacher: “Johnny, where do you get seven from?!”

Johnny: “Because I’ve already got a cat!”

GEORGIA TECH

Reaching the end of a job interview, the Human Resources Officer asks a young engineer fresh out of the Georgia Tech, “And what starting salary are you looking for?” The engineer replies, “In the region of $125,000 a year, depending on the benefits package.” The interviewer inquires, “Well, what would you say to a package of five weeks vacation, 14 paid holidays, full medical and dental, company matching retirement fund to 50% of salary, and a company car leased every two years, say, a red Corvette?” The engineer sits up straight and says, “Wow! Are you kidding?” The interviewer replies, “Yeah, but you started it.”

Bible Study

The Fruit of the Spirit: Faith    Galatians 5:22

Now that we have the inward man taken care of: love, joy, and peace.

And the outward man taken care of: longsuffering, gentleness, and goodness.

We can now establish a right relationship with the Lord.  The Seventh aspect of the Fruit of the Spirit is Faith.

Hebrews 11:1-6.  The biblical definition of faith is as good as it gets.

Hebrews 11:1-3  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  (2)  For by it the elders obtained a good report.  (3)  Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

1.  The substance of things hoped for.  “Substance” is something that can be touched or seen.  Through others in similar situations, we can see the “hand of God” in both their victories and defeats.  “Hoped for” are future events that will follow the pattern of history.  Things that we are persuaded of:  when tornados came, my mom would always say, “God knows where I am!”

2.  The evidence of things not seen.  “Evidence” means persuaded by something witnessed.  In verse 3, we find the evidence of nature’s creation.  Perfect, synchronized, uniform in procreation, designed to work together as nothing that is made is without purpose.  Supernatural things that are happening both to us and around us.

E.  Our relationship with God is faith based upon and then continued through Faith!  Without faith, nothing else matters.

a. Faith points to God – Hebrews 11:3  Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

b. Faith pleases God – Hebrews 11:6  But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

1.  Our Salvation is Faith Based.  Hebrews 11:6a  “cometh to God must believe that he is”

a)  The agent of saving faith – Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Ephesians 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

b)  The action of saving faith – Romans 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

c)  The assurance of saving faith – Romans 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,

2. Our Service is Faith Based.  Hebrews 11:6b  “and that he is a rewarder”

2 Corinthians 5:7  (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)

a. It produces results in the believer – Hebrews 12:1  Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,  

Hebrews 11:26-27  Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. (27) By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.

b. It promises reward to the believer – Hebrews 12: 2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Psalms 31:23-24  O love the LORD, all ye his saints: for the LORD preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer.  (24)  Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.

3.  Our Spiritual Communion is Faith Based.  Hebrews 6c “them that diligently seek him.”

John 20:28-29  And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.  (29)  Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.

a.  Our Prayers are Faith Based – Matthew 21:22  And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.

b.  Our Worship is Faith Based – John 4:24  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Victory Baptist Church 24 February 2021 victorypalmetto.com

Wade’s Wednesday

Seize the Day!

By Luci Swindoll

It’s a funny thing about time: Every one of us knows we have only twenty-four hours a day, yet we try our best to make each day last longer or become shorter to suit our preferences. While the clock ticks out the same number of minutes at the save rate every day, we try to save them like pennies in a jar, so we can spend them someday somewhere else, whenever we choose.

That’s not a bad idea, but it just doesn’t work that way. Many of us cannot grasp the truth that the time allotted to us on this earth is sufficient for all the Lord has planned for us to do. We don’t need one minute more or one minute less to accomplish the job: the job of living.

When I was a child, our family had a chiming clock that had been handed down through the generations and was a well-loved treasure. On the hour, of course, it chimed out the time, and by it we kept on schedule with meals and departures and awakening and sleeping. Often from our respective bedrooms each of us called out the number of chimes until the last one stopped. 

One night after we had all gone to bed about midnight, the clock began to chime, and we started our audible ritual: “Nine   ten   eleven   twelve.” Just as we closed our mouths after shouting out, “TWELVE!” the clock struck thirteen. We could hardly believe our ears. 

Where did that come from? I wondered, as we all laughed heartily from our beds. Then, almost in perfect unison, we called out, “It’s later than you think!”

For most of us, that’s the problem: our greatest fear is running out of time. So we hurry through life trying desperately to get everything done: working overtime, eating fast food in the car, racing down the freeway. Life itself encourages us to hurry. I can do my laundry twice as fast as my grandmother did; I can travel coast to coast faster than my father ever could; with a few keystrokes and clicks of the mouse I can handle correspondence that took my mother hours. Yet I seem to have less time than they did. What has happened?

In our quest to save time we’re losing something. My grandparents, for example, always had time for my parents and my brothers and me; they had time for music in their home; they emphasized beautifully served meals, family reunions, and long conversations. It seemed they had time for everything in life that was important because they took time to live. They treasured the biblical injunction that proclaims, “This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).

What about you? Do you seize each day with passionate vigor? Don’t wait for some other time. Tonight your clock could strike thirteen. It’s later than you think, so rejoice in this day and be glad?

(From Women at the Well compiled by Betty Robison

Tuesday With Karen

When We Touch The Master
When we touch the Master, His power is very real,
All He offers us makes our life fulfilled;
He never draws away when we come to Him,
But stays close as our loving, Faithful Friend!
When we touch the Master, He makes our life complete,
He blesses us with all the things we’ll ever need;
He knows what will happen before it takes place,
Giving us the right amount of mercy & grace!
When we touch the Master, things begin to change,
Trusting His hand makes our life rearranged;
When we seek His face & holy, righteous touch,
The changes He’ll make will be great & so much!
When we touch the Master, He’ll do a work in our life,
He is able to lead our steps each day & night;
So when it seems things are becoming a disaster,
We need to reach out & just touch the Master!

Carry Out The Trash

Beautiful Garbage

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth…but lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven.” – Matthew 6:19-20

Years ago I read about a man who had a rather ingenious way of getting rid of his garbage, during the NY City Sanitation worker strike. He would gift-wrap it, put it out on the curb in front of his house, and invariably someone driving by would see that wrapped box, stop, and pick it up. And the man would be behind the curtains, watching those people drive away with their gift-wrapped garbage!

So many times that’s what the devil does. He just takes the things of this world and wraps them up so beautifully. But what we get is not treasure…it turns out to be trash.

Don’t let the devil cheat you—don’t cling to the worthless things of this world, but use your resources and energies wisely to invest in souls and store up eternal treasuresin Heaven!

Add up everything you have that money can’t buy and death can’t take away. The sum will reveal to you how rich you really are.

What Cancer Can’t Do

By David Egner

Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
—1 Corinthians 15:57

One of the most dreaded sentences a patient can hear is, “You have cancer.” These words bring a chill to the heart. Although great progress is being made in treating this disease, recovery can be long and painful, and many people do not survive.

An enthusiastic believer in Christ, Dan Richardson, lost his battle with cancer. But his life demonstrated that even though the physical body may be destroyed by disease, the spirit can remain triumphant. This poem was distributed at his memorial service:

Cancer is so limited . . .

It cannot cripple love,

It cannot shatter hope,

It cannot corrode faith,

It cannot eat away peace,

It cannot destroy confidence,

It cannot kill friendship,

It cannot shut out memories,

It cannot silence courage,

It cannot invade the soul,

It cannot reduce eternal life,

It cannot quench the Spirit,

It cannot lessen the power of the resurrection.

If an incurable disease has invaded your life, refuse to let it touch your spirit. Your body can be severely afflicted, and you may have a great struggle. But if you keep trusting God’s love, your spirit will remain strong.

Our greatest enemy is not disease, but despair.

From Our Daily Bread By David Egner 

A Child’s Lesson

Everyday Mrs. Davidson, my fifth grade teacher would read us a story after lunch. My favorite stories were Brer Rabbit, by Joel Chandler Harris, Uncle Remus. The stories were not only funny but taught a lesson about the way we should treat one another and other character building lessons.
The Tar Baby was the story that many of us have heard told or read. It was a story of Brer Fox’s plan to capture Brer Rabbit. He set up a tar baby by the path that Brer Rabbit passed by every morning. As Brer Rabbit passed by and spoke to tar baby, of course there was no response. Brer Rabbit’s reply “I’m going to teach you how to talk to respectable people, if it’s my last act,’ said Brer Rabbit. ‘If you don’t take say good morning, I’m going to beat you up”.
We know how the story ends with Brer Rabbit stuck to tar baby, Brer Fox happy that he finally caught Brer Rabbit, but is talked into tossing him into the briar patch. Out of the briar patch hops Brer Rabbi, “Born and bred in the briar patch, that’s me,” laughed Brer Rabbit.
It may seem odd but I think we can learn a lot about Christian behavior from this children’s story. The simplest of these is that when we are trapped by the forces of sin that we can be freed by simply returning to our Christians roots. God’s Word is where we must go back to if we are to find freedom from those sins. Even those sins we knew were wrong.
Psalms 19:12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.13Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.
Psalms 51:7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

Friday Funnies

Church Humor

Over the massive front doors of a church, these words were inscribed: “The Gate of Heaven”. Below that was a small cardboard sign which read: “Please use other entrance.”

Rev. Warren J. Keating, Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Yuma, AZ, says that the best prayer he ever heard was: “Lord, please make me the kind of person my dog thinks I am.”

On a very cold, snowy Sunday in February, only the pastor and one farmer arrived at the village church. The pastor said, “Well, I guess we won’t have a service today.” The farmer replied: “Heck, if even only one cow shows up at feeding time, I feed it.”

During a children’s sermon, Rev. Larry Eisenberg asked the children what “Amen” means. A little boy raised his hand and said: “It means – ‘Tha-tha-tha-that’s all folks!'”

I was at the beach with my children when my four-year-old son ran up to me, grabbed my hand, and led me to the shore, where a sea gull lay dead in the sand. “Mommy, what happened to him?” the little boy asked. “He died and went to Heaven,” I replied. My son thought a moment and then said, “And God threw him back down?”

Bill Keane, creator of the Family Circus cartoon strip tells of a time when he was penciling one of his cartoons and his son Jeffy said, “Daddy, how do you know what to draw?” I said, “God tells me.” Jeffy said, “Then why do you keep erasing parts of it?”

After the church service, a little boy told the pastor: “When I grow up, I’m going to give you some money.” “Well, thank you,” the pastor replied, “but why?” “Because my daddy says you’re one of the poorest preacher we’ve ever had.”

My wife invited some people to dinner. At the table, she turned to our six-year-old daughter and said, “Would you like to say the blessing?” I wouldn’t k