Series Code: TWH
Program Code: TWH180317A
00:23 And this morning as we go before the Lord in message,
00:29 I invite your prayer
00:32 as I go to the Lord in prayer.
00:38 Bow your heads with me.
00:42 Loving Father in heaven, we thank You, Lord,
00:47 That the reality that when we don't see...
00:52 Your plan, when we cannot trace Your hand,
00:57 and when we don't understand
00:59 we can trust Your heart.
01:02 In this world that is steadily in decline,
01:05 we do pray that we can remember
01:08 that we have not arrived
01:09 where we are by cleverly devised plans
01:14 by the guidance and protection that You have provided for us
01:18 every moment of every day.
01:21 And now as we...
01:24 Pause to listen to the message You have ordained
01:28 for this day,
01:30 may we understand in a more real and practical way
01:34 what it means to trust Your heart,
01:36 in Jesus' name I ask,
01:44 If you have your Bibles with you this morning,
01:46 turn with me to the scripture reading.
01:49 It's Isaiah 60:1-2,
01:53 Isaiah 60:1-2,
01:59 "Arise," together,
02:01 "Arise, shine, for your light has come!
02:06 And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
02:09 For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
02:13 and deep darkness the people,
02:16 but the Lord will arise over you,
02:19 and His glory will be seen upon you."
02:25 It was called the worst dust storm in American history,
02:31 April 14, 1935.
02:36 According to some counts
02:37 it was referred to as the black blizzard,
02:41 as the Midwestern states of Texas and Oklahoma
02:48 were covered by a cloud that was estimated to be
02:52 more than a mile high
02:56 of just dust and dirt.
03:04 When the damage was estimated, it was suggested that
03:06 more than 300 million tons
03:11 of top soil was moved by winds of more than 60 miles an hour
03:16 across the Midwestern plains.
03:20 When you begin to read the personal accounts
03:23 of what occurred,
03:26 people said that you could not see
03:28 your hand in front of your face.
03:30 It was of such intensity that it was dangerous to breathe...
03:37 and surely when they saw the approaching
03:39 black blizzard as it were,
03:42 people ran for cover for more than an hour and a half.
03:49 Let me suggest to you this morning
03:51 that there is a black blizzard coming.
03:54 A dust storm is building...
03:58 On the horizon.
04:00 And it is in light of this approaching darkness
04:04 that Isaiah, the prophet
04:06 is calling on to people of God to run for spiritual cover,
04:13 as he pulls back the stage,
04:16 introducing us to an age that is approaching
04:19 with a contrast between light and darkness
04:22 will reach its extreme fulfillment.
04:27 Not too far distant we will arrive at a time
04:29 where all the grey areas no longer exist
04:34 and everyone on planet earth
04:37 will be in one camp or the other.
04:42 It is on this complete stage of divergence
04:47 that we will stand in contrast
04:50 to those who have joined the alliance of darkness
04:55 if we would continue standing with the alliance of light.
05:01 Dr. Luke, introducing us to this depraved society
05:04 writes these words in Luke 17:26,
05:09 speaking of this generation of darkness,
05:12 he writes these words,
05:14 "And as it was in the days of Noah,
05:17 so it will be in the days of the Son of Man."
05:21 And just so that we are clear
05:22 about how the days of Noah were,
05:25 preserves the words in Genesis 6:5
05:28 when he says...
05:29 in his Genesis commentary,
05:32 "Then the Lord saw
05:34 that the wickedness of man was great in the earth,
05:39 and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart
05:42 was only evil continually."
05:46 In Desire of Ages, page 636,
05:49 the servant of the Lord writes these words.
05:52 "Everything in the world is in agitation."
05:56 Do you believe that?
05:58 "The signs of the times are ominous.
06:02 Coming events cast their shadow before."
06:07 And then she says,
06:08 "The spirit of God is being withdrawn from the earth."
06:13 In Revelation 7, John,
06:15 from the Island of Patmos,
06:17 inserts his commentary in 1:1, he says,
06:21 "After these things I saw
06:24 four angels standing at the four corners of the earth,
06:29 holding the four winds of the earth,
06:33 that the wind should not blow on the earth,
06:37 on the sea,
06:39 or on any tree."
06:44 I want to pause in this point of the sermon and say,
06:46 thank God, he is still holding the winds.
06:49 The sad reality is, many see the approaching signs,
06:54 many see the society being developed,
06:57 but many choose to ignore
07:00 and they insert
07:02 into their point of willing ignorance
07:05 things that are not contributory
07:08 to these signs at all.
07:10 The Apostle Peter tells us that in the last days,
07:12 people are going to see the world around them
07:15 going down as it were going down in flames gradually,
07:22 morally, economically.
07:26 They are going to see a weather pattern
07:27 that is unpredictable,
07:29 a society that is unhinged.
07:33 They are going to see the homes falling apart,
07:35 churches being divided.
07:37 They are going to see the rise of complacency
07:40 and the Laodicean condition,
07:42 but they are going to somehow contribute these things
07:46 to forces and circumstances completely unrelated.
07:51 Listen to the words of the Apostle Peter.
07:54 If you have your Bibles, turn with me to 2 Peter 3:3-7.
08:00 Peter gives us a commentary of this dark generation
08:04 that is being developed before our eyes.
08:08 He says, "Knowing this first:
08:10 that scoffers will come" in the what days?
08:15 "In the last days,
08:17 walking according to their own lusts,
08:20 and saying, "Where is the promise of His coming?
08:25 For since the fathers fell asleep,
08:28 they say, all things continue as they were
08:32 from the beginning of creation."
08:34 Before I go any further, let me just say it,
08:36 "All things have not continued as they were
08:39 from the beginning of creation."
08:41 Matter of fact, things are quite different
08:42 than they were just a few years ago.
08:45 Things are extremely different than they were
08:47 when I was being raised in high school.
08:48 Come on, some old people say amen.
08:51 The world is quite different than it used to be
08:53 just 10 years ago.
08:54 Politically, socially, morally, economically,
08:56 every way you can think of,
08:58 the world is not the same world.
09:00 But Peter inserts why they think that.
09:03 He says in verse 5,
09:04 "For this they willingly forget:"
09:08 they choose to forget,
09:11 "that by the word of God the heavens were of old,
09:15 and the earth standing out of water and in the water,
09:19 by which the world that then existed
09:23 being flooded with water.
09:26 But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved
09:29 by the same word,
09:31 are reserved for fire
09:34 until the day of judgment
09:36 and perdition of ungodly men."
09:40 The world is on the verge of a complete breakdown.
09:45 It is in this context
09:49 that Isaiah the prophet says to the people,
09:51 arise, shine, for your light has come.
09:54 Not your light is coming,
09:56 but arise and shine.
09:58 It is in this dark generation that the apostle,
10:02 that the prophets of Old Testament and New Testament
10:06 together are saying,
10:08 if ever there was a time that the people of God
10:11 should be shining in contrast to the world, it is now.
10:18 If ever there should be a marked difference between
10:21 what's going on out there and what's going on in here,
10:24 it ought to be now.
10:28 And excuse me as I read another quotation
10:30 from God's inspired messenger.
10:34 Testimonies for the Church,
10:36 Volume 6, page 408, she says,
10:38 "The signs thickening around us
10:43 telling us of the near approach of the Son of God
10:47 are attributed to any other
10:50 than the true cause.
10:52 Men cannot discern the sentinel angel
10:55 restraining the four winds
10:57 that they shall not blow until the servants of God are sealed.
11:02 But when God shall bid His angels to lose the winds,
11:07 there shall be such a scene of strife
11:10 as no pen can picture."
11:13 Think about it.
11:15 You think about the worst war
11:17 and your mind fails in comparison to even conjure up
11:22 what's on the horizon.
11:24 You think of the worst earthquake
11:25 ever gripping this planet
11:27 and the human estimation falls far short
11:33 of even bringing to the cerebral cortex
11:37 that the slightest imagination
11:39 of what is on the horizon.
11:41 You think of the collapse of society
11:44 where every moral fiber has been finally abandoned
11:49 and it's on the horizon.
11:51 If you think where
11:54 the human feeling
11:55 for taking human life has been completely exhausted
12:00 and nothing but murder and death run rampant,
12:04 it's on the horizon.
12:06 If you think of a world where immorality...
12:10 Is not only peddling the dark
12:12 but sold in the light
12:14 on the street corners of your cities,
12:16 in your homes, through your televisions,
12:18 through your devices,
12:20 the time is not far distance,
12:22 it is being built right before our eyes.
12:28 And when it all comes to fruition
12:30 and when the stage is finally erected,
12:32 and it stands as it were on the plains of Babylon,
12:37 we will see such a scene as no pen can picture.
12:42 But the Apostle Paul explains why
12:45 humanity chooses to dismiss the signs.
12:47 Notice his words of wisdom in Romans 1:28.
12:51 In other words, as you turned there,
12:53 Paul the Apostle is saying,
12:54 "It is not that men don't understand,
12:57 it's that they don't want to understand."
13:00 It is not that God has not made the knowledge available.
13:04 But notice what he says,
13:06 in Romans 1:28,
13:08 "And even as they did not like
13:12 to retain God in their knowledge,
13:17 God gave them over to a debased mind,
13:21 to do those things which are not fitting."
13:23 In other words,
13:25 God has been knocking on the hearts
13:28 and minds of everyone in society.
13:31 And let me make it very clear,
13:32 when the day of judgment come,
13:34 there will be nobody that ever lived,
13:37 that ever would be able to say
13:39 that they have not had an opportunity
13:42 to receive God,
13:44 to know Jesus.
13:48 From the society where Jesus has been erased
13:51 from the pages of their daily lives,
13:55 till the society where Jesus is on every Bible,
13:58 on every iPad, on every device,
14:01 in every corner of the globe.
14:03 There will not be a single individual
14:06 that will be able to say
14:08 that God has not appeared to them.
14:12 Titus, the Apostle says,
14:14 "The grace of God that bring of salvation
14:17 has appeared to all men."
14:18 Has appeared to how many men?
14:20 Every society.
14:22 But Paul makes it clear,
14:24 they did not like to retain God in their knowledge.
14:29 And when I think about a particular word
14:30 that jumped out at me
14:31 when I was putting my message together,
14:33 I thought of the word debased.
14:35 What is a debased mind?
14:38 A debased mind is a degraded mind,
14:40 a contaminated mind,
14:43 a corrupted mind.
14:45 A mind that has been degraded intentionally,
14:49 a mind that has been contaminated voluntarily,
14:53 a mind that has been corrupted by one's own participation
14:58 and that which degrades,
15:00 that which contaminates, and that which corrupts.
15:03 Nothing gets corrupted involuntarily.
15:06 It always gets corrupted
15:07 by the participation of the individual
15:09 that eventually
15:11 experiences the result of his or her own choice.
15:16 They did not like to retain God in their knowledge.
15:19 They chose to push God out.
15:21 And when God is not in your mind,
15:24 every and anything
15:25 that debases, degrades,
15:27 and contaminates will be there.
15:30 Amen, somebody?
15:32 And our world,
15:34 think about it, our world,
15:36 the devil is busy
15:38 contaminating, degrading,
15:40 and corrupting our society.
15:43 Just look at your television for a brief moment
15:45 and see how many times you can sit
15:47 without choosing to change the channel.
15:50 Listen to the music on the radio
15:52 and the music being pushed by modern artists
15:56 who are choosing to intentionally corrupt
15:59 the minds of our young.
16:01 I was raised when you didn't have to go to the record store
16:04 and try to choose an album or CD where it says,
16:07 "Explicit lyrics content."
16:10 When I was being raised, you didn't have to get a rating
16:13 at the beginning of the show, rated G, rated whatever.
16:17 There were no ratings.
16:20 Right, Pastor CA.
16:21 There were no ratings.
16:23 We were raised in an innocuous society
16:26 where television was for entertainment,
16:28 not for corruption.
16:30 But somewhere along the way, the switch...
16:32 Switched over from entertainment to corruption.
16:35 Somewhere even in society, the law enforcement went,
16:38 they went from police officers
16:40 that were public servants to law enforcers.
16:46 They were peace keepers, now they are law enforcers.
16:50 Everything in our world is an agitation.
16:54 I was raised in a community where we have fun
16:56 with the people that drove by in the police car.
16:59 They'd stop and we would laugh and talk together.
17:01 Now when a police car drives by, many communities,
17:05 people are running here that aren't young,
17:08 because something has happened in our world
17:12 where society at every level
17:14 has been degraded, contaminated and corrupted.
17:18 What that means is when wrong no longer appears wrong
17:20 and sin no longer appears sin, for the mind is degraded,
17:25 contaminated, and corrupted.
17:27 One of my favorite devotionals is Oswald Chamber's
17:30 "My Utmost for His Highest."
17:33 And a few days ago, I was reading,
17:34 my wife and I read this either in the morning
17:36 or the evenings, and then we...
17:37 If the morning is our devotional,
17:39 we read our Bibles in the evening and vice versa.
17:42 But he made a statement and I believe
17:44 the Lord allowed this one to come in light
17:46 of the reality of what my sermon was going to be.
17:49 Listen to this, it's a very powerful quotation.
17:52 And by the way, if you have the book,
17:54 it's from the date March 16th.
17:57 He says, "One of the penalties of sin
18:00 is our acceptance of it.
18:05 It is not only God who punishes for sin,
18:08 but listen to this,
18:10 but sin establishes itself in the sinner
18:15 and takes its toll.
18:18 No struggling or praying
18:20 will enable you to stop doing certain things,"
18:24 because sin has established itself in the sinner
18:29 and it takes its toll, it takes over.
18:31 As Paul says, in Romans 7:17,
18:34 "It is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me."
18:39 When sin takes up residence in the soul
18:41 and establishes itself, he says, no struggling
18:45 or praying will enable you to stop certain things,
18:50 and the penalty of sin
18:52 is that you gradually get used to it
18:56 until you finally come to the place
18:58 where you no longer realize that it is sin.
19:02 That's degradation, that's contamination,
19:04 that's corruption.
19:06 Then he goes on to say,
19:07 "Only as we pray for the Lord
19:11 to break the hold, is there any hope for us,"
19:14 what do you say? Amen.
19:15 Only as we pray for the Lord to break the hold.
19:20 There are some people that could pray and struggle
19:22 and never be freed, you know why?
19:25 Because Jeremiah 13:23 says, "When it is by human effort,
19:29 we will never be able to accomplish our own freedom."
19:33 Listen to the words.
19:35 Can the Ethiopian change his skin?
19:36 What's the answer?
19:39 Or the leopard its spots?
19:40 What's the answer? No.
19:42 Then may you also do good
19:44 who are accustomed,
19:47 there's that word, accustomed.
19:49 The word accustomed means that is my practice.
19:53 You see, the Bible says of Jesus,
19:55 when He went into the synagogue,
19:57 He stood up to read as His custom was.
20:02 He practiced, being in the synagogue,
20:04 on the Sabbath,
20:06 reading and so it became something that was easy to do.
20:09 When we are practicers of sin,
20:11 and we become accustomed to it.
20:14 We cannot free ourselves from it
20:16 because it takes up residence in our soul,
20:20 into sin itself.
20:23 We become so unfamiliar with it
20:26 that it becomes us.
20:29 When we refuse to abandon what we know to be wrong,
20:33 it is like slowly getting into cold water.
20:35 Have you ever done that before?
20:38 Ever got into cold water before?
20:40 I was in a situation once where we were...
20:42 I was at Oakwood University,
20:44 it was Oakwood College at the time.
20:46 And I was in the Edward's Hall dorm,
20:53 Pastor CA know what I am talking about, third floor,
20:55 3B2C, that was my room.
20:59 And I'd get up every morning to run
21:01 and my roommate,
21:02 who was also from New York,
21:03 he would say to me, "You're crazy."
21:06 Because I'd get up in the morning to run
21:08 during the winter months and it was practically cold.
21:11 It wasn't as cold as here.
21:12 but I'd get up in the morning to run.
21:14 Every morning I'd run the whole campus and come back.
21:16 By the time I got back,
21:18 he's just getting out of bed,
21:19 wiping the crust out of his eyes,
21:21 and I am all awakened.
21:22 I'm excited
21:24 and, you know, just like the urban flavor,
21:26 he'd say, "You're crazy?"
21:28 You know, I'd come into the room,
21:29 I am all excited, "Wake up Chris, wake up."
21:31 He'd say, "Leave me alone.
21:33 Are you crazy running out there in that cold weather?"
21:34 But this is what I remember more than that.
21:37 As I'd get back, and by the time I got back,
21:40 everybody already showered.
21:42 So there was only cold water left.
21:45 And I got to get ready,
21:47 I had to shower,
21:48 go to breakfast, then get ready to go to class.
21:51 But all the cold water is all that's left.
21:57 I wasn't going to class sweaty and smelling?
22:01 So you kind of go like...
22:06 Just me and you, cold water.
22:08 Who's gonna win?
22:10 And you get in there and you kind of go, whoa.
22:13 You know what I am talking about?
22:15 But because you...
22:17 It shocks you at first,
22:19 but because you stay in it,
22:22 all of a sudden you get accustomed to the cold water.
22:27 That's how sin is.
22:29 You know it's not good for you, it's going to shock you.
22:33 But the longer you stay under it,
22:36 your body adjusts
22:38 to something that will shock
22:40 somebody's system into reality.
22:44 That's how sin is,
22:46 you slide your way into it.
22:48 It shocks you initially
22:51 but because you stay in it,
22:54 your body adjusts to it.
22:57 That's how sin is.
22:59 You get into a cold tub,
23:03 you get into a cold lake,
23:06 you become a member of the polar bear club
23:08 and they dive into the ice in the winter.
23:11 Nothing is more foolish,
23:15 but because they get in it,
23:18 and they stay in it,
23:20 and they've done it over and over.
23:22 It gets easier every time
23:25 to dive into something that will shock
23:28 the system of the normal person.
23:30 That's how sin is.
23:34 The danger of sin is not just the sin itself
23:37 but getting used to it.
23:39 You see when the world gets to the place
23:40 where its completely dark,
23:43 when the darkness is introduced
23:44 and we don't reject it, after a while,
23:47 the mind convinces itself
23:51 that darkness is light.
23:55 Now we know darkness is darkness
23:59 but if light becomes darkness,
24:02 how dark is the darkness?
24:06 Here, do you follow me?
24:08 Now if I turned a flashlight on, and that's dark to you,
24:12 how dark will it be if I turned the flashlight off?
24:16 That's why when you look at the conditions
24:17 that Revelation talks about in Revelation 16,
24:20 the reason why we are moving
24:21 towards the system of gross darkness
24:24 is in the religious world,
24:27 people don't want light, they want religion,
24:29 they want to have a good old party,
24:31 they want to feel good.
24:33 Nowadays, in Christianity, the new term is "experience."
24:37 And our church is being affected
24:38 by that same foolishness.
24:41 All around...
24:42 Did you experience God, hey?
24:44 Go Jesus.
24:46 Look at some of our universities
24:48 making a fool out of themselves
24:50 for feeling and experience.
24:52 That same nonsense will lead you down to experience hell.
24:55 You can be emotional but that ain't righteousness.
24:59 If emotion is righteousness,
25:00 look at the Mount Carmel showdown all day long.
25:04 All day long yelling for their God to respond,
25:08 The phone was disconnected.
25:10 'Cause when you worship the false gods,
25:12 you could be emotional all you want,
25:14 but ain't no God is gonna respond to that.
25:16 And all Elijah did was got down on his knees and said,
25:19 "Lord, if God be God, then respond by fire."
25:23 You want fire in your life?
25:24 Humble yourself before God.
25:27 Forget about emotion.
25:33 When light becomes darkness in you,
25:36 how great is that darkness?
25:38 how great is that darkness?
25:40 That's why it is in this age that the prophet screams,
25:43 "Darkness will cover the inhabitants.
25:45 Gross darkness the people."
25:49 The glory of God shall be risen upon you
25:51 and shall be seen on you.
25:53 It will only be seen on us if we embrace the truth.
25:57 But even deeper than that, if we love the truth.
26:03 Because Paul, the Apostle, writes in 2 Thessalonians,
26:05 "Because they received not a love of the truth
26:08 that they might be saved."
26:10 God sends them a strong delusion
26:12 that they will believe a lie.
26:13 Let me make it clear.
26:14 When what God has given you, you no longer want,
26:17 He'll give you what you don't want.
26:19 Let me say that, He'll give you what you do want.
26:22 I used to sit down at the dinner table.
26:24 My mother used to day, "That's dinner."
26:27 I'd say, "I don't want that."
26:28 She said, "Well, that's all you're getting."
26:30 Anybody know what I'm talking about?
26:33 "Here's God's Word." "I don't want that."
26:34 "Well, that's all you are getting."
26:37 And so what happens we go outside of God's Word.
26:39 We find our popular speaker, teachers having itching you
26:42 as we pick this evangelist there,
26:44 or that TV personality there,
26:46 or that one that makes me feel good,
26:47 I'm gonna laugh every time I look at his sermons.
26:49 You could laugh your way to hell.
26:53 Jesus didn't laugh His way to the cross.
26:55 The disciples didn't laugh
26:57 their way to persecution in dungeons.
26:58 They didn't laugh.
27:00 They stood for what was right.
27:02 And somehow, this modern age has made Christianity
27:05 into a marshmallow religion.
27:07 "Is your ship coming in?"
27:08 "What ship?
27:09 I didn't send any ship out."
27:12 My salvation is nearer than when I first believed.
27:14 That's coming.
27:17 But nowadays, the eyes are bad.
27:19 And if we start looking in the wrong direction,
27:21 and it's so sad when some of our churches are wondering,
27:23 "Well, why are we not awake?"
27:25 Well, you ain't awakers, you ain't preaching,
27:26 and you are not living, and you are not embracing,
27:29 and I've come to the place, thank you Jesus,
27:31 I've come to the place where I don't feel
27:33 that it's not what I'm doing up here,
27:35 but it's what you are doing down there.
27:38 I don't come to your house and feed you
27:39 but if you ain't eating God's Word, you will be complacent.
27:42 If you are not feasting on God's Word day by day
27:45 in your own personal life,
27:46 you are starving by the time you come on Sabbath morning.
27:51 And lot of preachers are trying to give you candy
27:53 on Sabbath morning,
27:55 I hope I'm not doing that.
28:02 The Apostle Paul continues to talk
28:03 about this gross darkness
28:05 and he says in 2 Corinthians 4:4,
28:07 he says that, "The gross darkness is orchestrated."
28:10 It's not coincidental.
28:11 Notice his words.
28:12 2 Corinthians 4:4, notice who is behind it.
28:16 He said, "Whose minds the god of this age has blinded,"
28:23 "Who do not believe."
28:26 I don't believe that.
28:29 I've had people tell me, "I know about the Sabbath
28:30 but I don't believe it."
28:32 Well, because you don't believe it.
28:34 I like what's the Chronicle...
28:35 What's the guy in Chronicle, what's his name,
28:36 Chris Hudson?
28:38 He'd say, "The truth is the truth
28:39 whether you believe it or not."
28:43 It's ain't the truth 'cause you believe it?
28:45 Four is four whether you believe it or not?
28:47 Two plus two is four whether you believe it or not?
28:50 But so many of our pastors are giving people
28:52 what they believe and what they don't believe.
28:54 I'm gonna tell you what the Bible says.
28:57 Your mind is blind
28:59 but the Word of God is not the problem.
29:01 He said, "Who do not believe."
29:03 Lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ
29:06 who is the image of God should shine on them.
29:10 The devil doesn't want
29:11 the glory of God to shine on anybody.
29:14 But here is where we come in.
29:16 Here is where we come in.
29:17 If they miss the glory of God
29:19 that was given to them from the courts of glory,
29:22 the glory of God ought to shine through us.
29:29 The glory of God ought to shine through our lives.
29:31 How can you be a child of a light,
29:33 but darkness is shining through your life.
29:36 The glory of God has to shine through us,
29:38 that's what the apostle says,
29:39 that's what the prophet says.
29:41 But the question is,
29:42 how does the God of this age create blindness?
29:46 How does he do it?
29:48 He does it by creating substitutes.
29:52 I thought about that the other day.
29:54 I was looking on the internet about substitutes,
29:55 and I came to find out that there's this one substance
29:57 that has been substituted more than any other
29:59 and that's sugar.
30:02 Sugar substitutes, remember that?
30:05 If you are old enough, remember saccharin?
30:09 Everybody wanted saccharin,
30:10 another big thing, you got to rest strike them,
30:12 until they found out that it causes cancer.
30:14 Some of you are looking for substitutes
30:16 and it's causing cancer in your spiritual life,
30:18 come on now.
30:20 Back down on your sugar
30:21 but stay away from the substitutes
30:24 or give it over sugar altogether.
30:25 But don't accept any substitutes
30:27 because there is no substitute for genuine truth.
30:31 Any substitute for the truth is a lie.
30:35 No matter how good it feels,
30:36 no matter how much enthusiasm is behind it,
30:38 any substitute for the truth is a lie.
30:43 Don't accept it.
30:45 But this is a point that is so very important.
30:48 Whatever you decide to substitute for truth,
30:50 just like saccharin, and false things created in laboratories.
30:55 Eventually, your body
30:57 and your mind will crave the substitutes
31:00 because you no longer want the real thing.
31:04 So there are substitutes for Bible study.
31:06 What is it?
31:07 The Grammys? What is it?
31:09 What are you doing on Wednesday night?
31:10 What's your substitute?
31:12 We have studies on Wednesday nights.
31:13 What's your substitute?
31:17 Some of us who live so close to the church,
31:19 we could fall out of our house right into the church.
31:21 Don't show up on Wednesday night Bible study, why?
31:24 Because pastor John is talking.
31:26 I'm gonna get straight with you.
31:28 Noah talked for 120 years.
31:30 What were their substitute?
31:32 Well, they got substitutes
31:33 but they ended up on the outside of the ark.
31:35 Let me tell you something, church,
31:36 I'm talking to my people now.
31:38 You can ignore Bible studies all you want,
31:40 but the time is gonna come that your ignorance
31:42 is gonna be so stark
31:44 because you didn't come when the Word of God
31:46 was being taught.
31:48 We got Wednesday night, we got Thursday night.
31:51 If you can't make one, make the other.
31:53 But you cannot ignore Bible studies.
31:57 Because you know what?
31:58 Somewhere along the way you got down into the cold water
32:00 and it is comfortable now.
32:02 Cannot break yourself away.
32:06 I like this morning's devotion in Oswald Chamber's.
32:10 He says, "The problem with so much of us
32:13 is we don't understand what we are dealing with."
32:16 We are dealing with a corruptible body.
32:18 We may be born again but we got one more thing
32:20 that we are fighting with until the day that Jesus comes,
32:23 sorry, until the day we are made into His image perfectly.
32:27 We got this corruptible body.
32:28 This what?
32:30 It's called sinful flesh.
32:32 You may be born of the spirit,
32:34 but you got to battle every morning with sinful flesh.
32:36 Sinful flesh remembers what brings you pleasure
32:40 and it will present that to you
32:41 to get you to walk away from the things that you need.
32:45 So the sinful flesh will say,
32:47 "We don't need to go to prayer meeting."
32:50 And like a fool you'd say, "You know, you are right."
32:54 Listen to me.
32:56 Oswald Chamber said,
32:57 "When the flesh says sit, listen to Jesus.
33:01 He says, go.
33:03 When the flesh says, eat, Jesus says, don't eat that.
33:07 When the flesh says, yawn, Jesus says pray."
33:12 And we give in to the flesh.
33:14 We give in to the flesh more than we give in to the spirit.
33:18 That's why the Bible says,
33:19 "Those who are led by the Spirit,
33:22 these are the sons of God, these are the children of God."
33:26 But so often now,
33:28 Christianity has become this comfortable practice
33:30 in so many of our churches.
33:31 I have even...
33:32 I don't want to be too clear,
33:34 I don't want to be too specific,
33:35 but I remember meeting a pastor who told me,
33:37 "I'm comfortable baptizing people with jewelry on."
33:41 I said, "I'm not."
33:44 So the Lord said to me, "Now,
33:45 are you comfortable with what he is comfortable with?
33:47 Or you are comfortable with what My Word teaches?"
33:50 I said, "Lord, I'm comfortable with what Your Word teaches."
33:54 If you're comfortable to law, the standards
33:56 because you don't want to offend somebody,
33:58 you do that and then you stand before God
34:00 and give Him an account for what you decide to do.
34:03 You can't modify God's Word.
34:05 When you accept the call to stand here,
34:07 you got to do two things,
34:09 you got to ode your life in harmony with it,
34:11 and then live it and preach it.
34:17 There are no substitutes.
34:18 John 3:19, "This is the condemnation,
34:22 that light has come into the world,
34:23 and men loved darkness rather than light
34:26 because their deeds were evil."
34:29 Three dangers we have to guard against, so you hear me?
34:31 How many dangers did I say? Three.
34:33 Here they are.
34:34 The first one, to be exposed to the light
34:36 and refuse to embrace it.
34:39 To be exposed to the light and refuse to embrace it.
34:43 It's like somebody shows up to rescue you
34:46 in the midst of a power outage
34:49 and you say, "I'll find another way."
34:51 And they drive away and you see the light going away
34:53 and all of a sudden, you are caught in abject darkness,
34:56 and you have no idea where you are going.
35:00 The second danger is to have the light
35:02 and refuse to walk in it.
35:05 The first one, exposed to the light
35:06 and refuse to embrace it.
35:08 There are those that have heard hundred,
35:10 maybe thousands of sermons
35:12 and walk away from it every Sabbath,
35:15 because they have been so immersed in cold water,
35:17 they can't feel the truth.
35:20 Well, there are those that have...
35:22 They have accepted the truth,
35:25 but they have not embraced the truth.
35:28 The difference between that is having your wife
35:30 and hugging your wife.
35:33 Some of you never hug your wife.
35:36 You might have her but she don't...
35:37 She is dying for lack of touch.
35:39 The truth is the same way,
35:41 some of the truth is dying for lack of embrace.
35:44 We got the truth in our Bibles, in our Sabbath school lessons,
35:47 in our quarterlies, in all the writings on our shelves,
35:49 but we don't embrace it,
35:51 because we're embracing everything else.
35:55 Got to embrace it.
35:57 You got to do what? Embrace it.
35:59 You know what embrace means?
36:00 If you have a water ski, that's what embrace means.
36:03 You try to water ski with one finger, see what happens.
36:08 Embrace it like your very existence
36:11 depends on how much you hold on.
36:15 And the third category.
36:17 Oh, this is even more devious than the first and the second.
36:20 The third one is, creating a version
36:25 of what you believe walking in the light means.
36:29 Creating your own version
36:31 of what you believe walking in the light means.
36:34 Now let me make this clear. This is deep.
36:36 You see many of us walk in the light,
36:38 but what that means is we walk in the light
36:40 according to the standards we set up.
36:44 We say, "I'm an Adventist, but I'm gonna just do this."
36:49 I'm an Adventist, but I'm only gonna do this.
36:54 I've heard it, I've been there.
36:56 I've talked to people in Phoenix like that.
36:58 I'm an Adventist, but I still believe in speaking in tongues.
37:02 I talked to somebody like that in Phoenix.
37:04 Now I know what the Bible said.
37:07 But I still believe in that
37:08 because that's what I used to be.
37:10 I talked to somebody who said, "Now why do you want that?"
37:13 Because it makes me feel good,
37:15 and it brings me peace.
37:16 I said, "No.
37:17 But the Bible says my peace
37:19 I leave with Jesus gives you peace."
37:20 So eventually, thank you Jesus.
37:22 Eventually, I kept on with his sister until she said,
37:25 "So I guess I must abandon it."
37:26 I said "Yeah."
37:27 'Cause it ain't in harmony with God's Word.
37:29 Whatever is not in harmony with God's Word,
37:31 abandon your version of what it means to walk in the truth.
37:35 Amen. Your version.
37:37 I like what Pastor CA did in this church.
37:39 I haven't come up and do it, but I remember it.
37:41 I'll let you do another sermon, but I must feel it right now.
37:45 How many of you want to be saved?
37:46 How many of you want to be saved, raise your hand.
37:48 There better not be a hand down here.
37:51 How many of you want to be saved?
37:52 Come on, let's do it again.
37:53 All right. Okay, put your hand down.
37:55 How many of you really want to be saved?
37:58 All right.
37:59 Come on up here. Anyway, wait.
38:01 He says, some of you ain't going to be saved
38:05 because of your spouse.
38:08 You put your spouse ahead of God.
38:10 Am I doing right so for?
38:12 Some of you ain't going to be saved because of your job.
38:16 You put your job ahead of God.
38:19 Some of you ain't going to be saved, I may add some stuff.
38:21 Some of you ain't going to be saved
38:22 because you put your beliefs ahead of God's Word.
38:25 Some of you ain't going to be saved because of your bling.
38:29 You put your jewelry ahead of God's Word.
38:33 You put your way of life ahead of God's Word.
38:35 You put your version of Adventism ahead of God's Word.
38:42 How many of you want to be saved now?
38:46 If you want to be saved, you got to walk in the light
38:49 not according to your standard
38:50 but according to God's standard.
38:53 We are living in such a dark age.
38:55 We're living in such a dark age.
38:57 Oswald Chamber says, "For many of us walking in the light
38:59 means walking according to the standard we have set up.
39:04 If the standard by which you walk
39:05 has not been set up by God's Word,
39:07 the standard is darkness."
39:08 Only God's Word is reliable to determine the standard.
39:15 Isaiah 59, the latter part,
39:17 "That's why we got to keep God's Word nearby us."
39:19 Can I get an amen on that?
39:21 We got to keep God's Word nearby us
39:24 like a sword in the battle.
39:26 The last part of Isaiah 59:19 says,
39:29 "When the enemy comes in like a flood,
39:32 the Spirit of the Lord will lift up
39:33 a standard against him."
39:35 God's Spirit lifts the standard, not us.
39:40 And our church today is going through a standard storm.
39:44 Some churches are thrown out, Ellen White over here.
39:46 Some churches want women ordination
39:48 more than they want salvation.
39:50 All this foolishness.
39:52 The devil's got us making idiots out of ourselves.
39:55 And the church that should be so perfectly united,
39:58 have made so many internal gods
40:00 that they don't know which one is which.
40:03 And that's why a storm is gonna come,
40:04 a storm has to come.
40:06 A storm has to come to this church.
40:09 God's got to send a storm to wake some of us up.
40:12 He's got to send earthquakes into our lives
40:14 to wake some of us up
40:15 because until our house is crumbled beneath our feet,
40:17 we will not look up to God.
40:20 So He's got to send a storm.
40:22 Some of us are so recalcitrant in the way we live,
40:24 we don't care what God's Word says.
40:26 We made an idol of how we feel about other people.
40:31 Another danger is,
40:35 the Lord dealt with me in this message.
40:37 Another danger is, there are those that are not comfortable
40:40 with God's Word at this point in their lives.
40:44 Let me make that clear.
40:45 Some people say, "Well, yeah,
40:47 I'm gonna eventually join the church but right now...
40:51 See I got this job."
40:54 Going to go to hell for a job.
40:57 Some people know about the truth, but they say,
40:59 "At this point, my spouse is not comfortable
41:03 with going to church on the Sabbath.
41:05 So I'm gonna chill with him or her for right now
41:08 because I'm not comfortable with God's Word
41:10 at this point in my life."
41:13 They have not rejected God's Word,
41:15 it just don't fit right now.
41:18 That's what Agrippa said,
41:20 "I'll call you at a more convenient time."
41:23 And it never...
41:25 I think it was Festus,
41:27 and the convenient time never came.
41:32 And then Agrippa said,
41:33 "You almost persuaded me to be a Christian,
41:35 but as one of my favorite preacher said
41:37 to be almost persuaded is to be totally lost."
41:42 To be almost saved is to be totally lost.
41:46 John 12:35 says,
41:50 "A little while longer the light is with you."
41:52 This is a powerful passage.
41:54 "A little while longer and the light is with you,
41:56 walk while you have the light."
41:59 While what?
42:00 While you have the light, lest darkness overtakes you.
42:04 "He who walks in darkness
42:05 does not know where he is going."
42:11 And there's some people, they have a life
42:13 but they walk away from it.
42:14 So they think, "Well, I didn't really...
42:15 I mean, I didn't...
42:17 I did not intellectually, I mean it's confusing."
42:18 It is confusing at best when you walk away from the light.
42:20 You know why?
42:22 Because you think, "Well,
42:23 I haven't intellectually abandoned the life."
42:25 But you have physically abandoned the life.
42:27 When you intellectually and physically are going
42:29 in two opposite directions, that's called confusion.
42:33 When you say in your mind, I still believe its truth,
42:36 but I'm going in this direction,
42:38 you are in confusion.
42:42 When you walk in darkness,
42:43 when you know about the light and you walk in darkness,
42:45 you don't know where you are going
42:48 and the danger is we think that somewhere along the way,
42:51 but Jesus said to His disciples,
42:53 "Walk in the light while you have it."
42:55 What does that mean?
42:57 Eventually, 70 disciples walked away from Jesus
43:00 and never walked with Him ever again, 70 of them.
43:04 If 70 disciples could walk away from Jesus,
43:09 I don't feel so bad when people say to me,
43:12 "Pastor, I ain't coming to church anymore."
43:15 Because of something you said in your sermon.
43:16 "Was it a lie?" "No."
43:17 "But it offended me."
43:20 And Peter...
43:22 The lawyer looked at Peter and said,
43:23 "You leave in two or I'm a Peter today."
43:25 He said, "Lord to whom shall I go?"
43:30 We got to get to the place in these days
43:31 when the world is calling us to compromise,
43:34 when the church is calling us to compromise,
43:36 when voices in the church are calling us to compromise.
43:39 We got to look at Jesus and say, "To whom shall I go?"
43:43 You have the words of life and the danger is,
43:48 people think that God is going to always be available
43:50 but Noah said it in those days,
43:52 "My spirit shall not always strive with man."
43:56 Shall not always strive with man.
43:58 When light is repetitiously rejected,
44:01 the ultimate deception occurs.
44:03 Look at Proverbs 14:12,
44:06 Proverbs 14:12,
44:09 Luis, you might have to ear this in two parts.
44:13 I love you, my brother.
44:16 Proverbs 14:12,
44:18 when the truth of God is repetitiously rejected,
44:21 the ultimate deception occurs.
44:23 Here it is.
44:24 "There is a way that seems right."
44:26 Together, there is a way that what?
44:28 "Seems right to a man but its end
44:32 is the way of death."
44:36 The danger of walking in the darkness
44:39 when there's a cliff ahead of you is eventually,
44:43 you'll reach the tipping point where there is no coming back.
44:48 Nobody ever fell up a cliff.
44:51 Think about that.
44:53 Nobody ever fill up a cliff,
44:55 but they have fallen down a cliff.
44:56 Some people live their lives
44:57 so close to the cliff spiritually,
44:59 that they're gonna fall off eventually.
45:01 I was watching the news the other night
45:03 and there was a particular show on television
45:05 where Oprah Winfrey, Oprah Winfrey made a statement,
45:07 I don't listen to everything she says,
45:09 but she hit a chord and I didn't forget it.
45:12 She said, "The darkness is spreading so fast these days
45:17 that you must become a soldier of the light,
45:20 the darkness is there to show you your light."
45:25 And I thought that is deep.
45:29 The darkness is spreading so fast these days.
45:33 You must become a soldier of the light.
45:37 The darkness is there to show you your light.
45:43 We've had darkness and darkness is gradual.
45:47 The world has gone through changes
45:49 from the beginning of civilization
45:50 to the very present, very quickly.
45:53 The age of antiquity
45:54 from Babylon, Medo-Persia, and Greece.
45:56 That's a long in the past.
45:58 There was a different understanding
45:59 than the classic age of antiquity.
46:02 During the times of Christ, the Greek and Roman empires.
46:05 Antiquity, classic antiquity.
46:08 Then the Dark Ages, the decline of the pagan empire of Rome
46:12 and the rise of the papal empire of Rome,
46:14 when Europe merged under the Roman rule.
46:17 Then the early age of enlightenment,
46:19 during the time of the Reformation
46:21 began in the year 1090.
46:23 Then early modern history from the 16th century.
46:26 It was called The Age of Discovery.
46:29 When all of a sudden, the Bible began to mean something
46:32 because the Bible was once again
46:33 put in the hands of the common man.
46:35 And the Protestant Reformation began.
46:38 People that stood on God's Word alone.
46:42 And then, late modern history, the 18th century.
46:45 When the American Bible Society and the Advent movement began.
46:48 Come on, say amen somebody.
46:50 God began to raise up a movement that says,
46:52 "All I want is the Word of God.
46:54 Nothing else."
46:58 And then the industrial revolution,
47:00 and then we finally find contemporary history
47:03 which modernists say from 1945, from the end of World War II
47:07 to the present has been contemporary history.
47:11 What has happened with contemporary history?
47:14 The devil went back through his chronicles and said,
47:16 "At what point
47:17 in the development of human history
47:19 have I been most successful?"
47:21 It was the Dark Ages.
47:24 So because he doesn't create anything,
47:27 he went back and decided to implement the tactics
47:31 that were best during the Dark Ages.
47:33 Follow me carefully, this is powerful.
47:36 He raised up pagan Rome,
47:39 then he brought pagan Rome down
47:41 and he raised up papal Rome.
47:44 And papal Rome is enforced to this very day.
47:46 He was successful in bringing Europe into complete darkness,
47:50 also called "The Medieval Times."
47:52 When evil was grand.
47:54 Read Foxe's Book of Martyrs.
47:55 You want to see evil?
47:57 You have to have a strong stomach
47:58 to read that book to see the atrocities
48:00 perpetrated on human life.
48:03 And he thought that was the point
48:04 where the world best fits the kind of demon I am
48:09 and so he decided,
48:11 "I got to bring that back."
48:13 But there's a difference now,
48:14 praise God, there's a difference now.
48:17 See the difference now is the light got out.
48:21 Amen. Amen.
48:23 The light got out.
48:26 He couldn't turn the light on too bright in the dark ages,
48:28 but the light is out.
48:30 The light is on now.
48:32 God's got a movement all over this world,
48:34 the light is on now.
48:36 You can't turn off the light
48:38 because the devil don't have the switch.
48:40 The light is on now.
48:43 Somebody got a light in Europe, and in the Philippines,
48:45 and in the Caribbean, and in Ireland, and in Europe,
48:48 the light is on now.
48:50 And the devil's going, "How am I gonna do it?"
48:52 So he decides to do it through immorality,
48:56 through violating the marriage, sexual immorality, adultery,
49:02 Sabbath breaking Satanists.
49:04 You know something's wrong
49:06 when Satanists and Christians believe the same thing,
49:10 that you have an immortal soul.
49:14 When the scriptural gospel
49:15 has been replaced with the social gospel,
49:17 when political corruption is applauded,
49:19 supported, and celebrated, Lord, have mercy.
49:22 Our church, all over the world, at least in this nation,
49:27 has become so politically inoculated
49:31 that it's getting to the place
49:32 where Adventists are becoming of no value
49:35 because we talk more about Donald Trump than Jesus.
49:41 There was the Obama-ites when he was in office.
49:43 Now they have the Trump-ites.
49:44 The only trumpet that's your sound is the gospel trumpet.
49:47 Stop taking sides on the left and right
49:49 and take sides on the center.
49:52 We come to church and talk about what he said
49:54 and what she didn't say, and who's in trouble
49:55 and what's not in trouble.
49:56 We are in trouble.
49:58 Got to get back to the gospel God has given us.
50:01 Darkness is covering the inhabitants.
50:03 When we are more in favor of human frailty
50:06 than divine perfection, something's wrong.
50:09 That's what's happening in our world today.
50:12 We get together in our little pockets
50:13 and discuss what was said, what wasn't said,
50:14 and who didn't and who what...
50:18 I need a drink.
50:23 And we forget that we have been called to hold up the light.
50:30 And right in the midst of our meandering in the maze
50:33 of mediocrity and pondering at the pool of popularity
50:36 and negotiating at the table of the enemy,
50:38 in the midst of this chiasm of confusion,
50:41 Protestantism and Catholicism is building the grand stage.
50:47 And Rome is saying, "Come on home",
50:49 and the daughters are coming home.
50:52 And when it's all said and done,
50:53 we'll be the only one still holding up the light.
50:55 But that may not be true
50:56 if that's not the case in your life.
51:01 Can the blind lead the blind?
51:03 Will they not both fall into the pit?
51:07 Today, my brothers and my sisters,
51:09 I'm gonna just narrow this down so it won't be edited.
51:12 But I'm gonna say this, we've got to find an answer
51:16 to the darkness in human history.
51:18 We've got to find an answer to the darkness
51:19 in this world that's corrupt to the core.
51:22 You know when people get to the place
51:25 where they hate those that are good,
51:28 something is wrong.
51:30 The Bible says, it's going to be so corrupt
51:32 that people are going to be despisers
51:34 of those that are good.
51:36 "When the world begins to despise those that are good,
51:39 darkness has covered the inhabitants
51:41 and gross darkness has covered the people."
51:44 And my challenge to you today,
51:47 in a world where Jesus has been deleted,
51:49 where morality is now...
51:53 Where morality is denied and immorality is celebrated,
51:57 in a world where even amongst our own ranks,
52:00 darkness is becoming more palatable than light.
52:03 When we're saying that the everlasting gospel
52:06 is no longer the relevant gospel.
52:09 When we're saying the three angels' messages
52:11 must be abandoned in favor of feeling
52:14 and emotion and experience.
52:17 God is saying, this is the generation that I'm saying,
52:20 "Arise and shine, for your light has come.
52:24 And the glory of the Lord shall be risen upon you,
52:26 for behold darkness will cover the inhabitants
52:29 and gross darkness the people."
52:31 But, thank God for the word but.
52:34 Come on, somebody?
52:35 But in this case the Lord will rise over you
52:40 and His glory will be seen on you.
52:44 Let me ask you the question today.
52:46 Here my appeal is to the point.
52:49 How many of you are determined by God's grace,
52:53 that the glory of the Lord will be seen on you?
52:57 Would you stand with me?
53:00 Would you stand with me?
53:03 This is the age of darkness
53:04 but somebody has got to be in the light
53:07 and I love it, the benefits of the light,
53:09 Jesus said, "If you walk in the light
53:11 as He is in the light, you will have fellowship
53:14 with one another and the blood of Jesus Christ,
53:17 His Son, will cleanse us from all sin."
53:22 You got to walk in the light.
53:24 There's another dust storm coming
53:26 and it's going to be ferocious.
53:28 It's going to be ferocious, just play softly for me.
53:31 I thought you were already there.
53:32 It's going to be ferocious.
53:34 It ain't gonna be a dust storm in the Midwest,
53:37 not in Texas, and Oklahoma, and Kansas,
53:40 it's going to be a dust storm that is planet size.
53:44 And it's coming.
53:45 It's coming but God is saying to His people,
53:48 "While the dust is coming.
53:50 Run for cover in the righteousness of Jesus."
53:55 Run for cover on the foundation of His unshakable Word,
54:00 run for cover under the angel's wings.
54:07 When there is going to be destruction all around us,
54:10 somebody is going to be in the secret place.
54:13 He that dwelleth in the secret place
54:15 of the most High shall abide
54:16 under the shadow of the Almighty.
54:18 And I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge
54:20 and my fortress, my God in him will I trust."
54:24 Today God is calling somebody to the secret place,
54:27 where truth is love,
54:29 where unity among brothers and sisters is celebrated,
54:33 where even our attitude
54:34 toward somebody else has been abandoned
54:36 because we cannot afford to misrepresent Jesus.
54:40 If there's somebody here today
54:41 that wants to make that commitment,
54:43 let me make a point today
54:44 and the Lord is saying to me, Pastor John, go further.
54:47 There may be somebody here today
54:48 that did not ever give their lives
54:50 to the truth of God's Word.
54:52 You may not be, by profession
54:54 and by existence a Seventh-day Adventist Christian.
54:57 But God is calling you today to make your decision
54:59 and you're here.
55:03 And you want to say, "Lord Jesus,
55:04 I see the dust storm coming.
55:08 And I want to be a part of those
55:13 that are going to be in that rank of saved people."
55:17 If God is saying to you today, my brother, my sister,
55:20 if the Lord is saying to you today,
55:21 it's time for you to join those who hold up the light,
55:27 and you're here today and you know you need to be baptized.
55:32 Don't worry about the details,
55:34 the Lord will work out the details.
55:35 But you know you need to be baptized.
55:37 Don't think about what you got to get right
55:39 because you can't get it right first.
55:42 Don't worry about the details.
55:43 God is just simply saying,
55:45 "I want to know where your heart is,
55:48 I want to know where you stand."
55:50 Not your circumstances but where you stand?
55:53 Where you want to be when all the cloud is all past?
55:57 Will you still stand there,
55:59 or will you be covered with a 300 tons of darkness?
56:03 Will you be covered
56:05 by the righteousness of Jesus Christ?
56:07 Is there somebody here today
56:08 that want to make that decision?
56:11 Is there somebody here today that want to make that...
56:12 I'm looking around.
56:14 I know there's got to be somebody here,
56:16 we can't all be perfect.
56:18 I don't believe that to be the case.
56:26 I never knew we had a perfect church before.
56:29 I never knew we had everybody in Jesus already,
56:32 or maybe that's the case here.
56:36 But if the Lord is calling you, make your call today.
56:41 The decision is all He is looking for.
56:47 The storm is coming.
56:49 It's time to hold up the light.
56:56 Father in heaven.
57:02 You told us storm is coming.
57:09 I'm praying Lord that You'll pour some warm water
57:11 in that cold tub,
57:16 that You might execrate and rescue your children,
57:18 that you might pull them
57:19 out of what they've become comfortable with,
57:22 that you might make their comfort so uncomfortable,
57:28 that they'll cry out for your deliverance,
57:33 that you'll make their darkness so dark,
57:39 that from the depths of their soul they'll scream
57:41 for the light to be turned back on one more time.
57:45 Father, You've given us the blessing of understanding
57:51 the truth as it is in Your Word and as it is in You.
57:56 And in this age of compromise and complacency
57:58 and where there are coalitions being built
58:03 and where there is a drawing to one side and to the other,
58:08 where there's a polarization taking place.
58:11 Help us to stand and hold on
58:14 in the midst of this dust storm.
58:18 And we do pray, Lord Jesus,
58:22 that when the storm is over,
58:25 that You will call us to rise
58:29 above the plains of destruction.
58:31 That you will call us to enter into the joy of our Lord
58:35 eternally, perfectly, and permanently.
58:41 And that we will look back on our lives
58:43 and at the moments of decision,
58:44 at the intersections of choosing
58:46 the darkness above the light,
58:48 at the intersection of choosing the light above the darkness,
58:51 we will be able to look back at that pivotal moment and say,
58:54 thank You Father
58:58 for holding up the light.
59:03 And so, Lord Jesus, I thank You today
59:05 for Your light that has never ever grown dim.
59:10 But may we now as lights in this dark world as candles
59:16 that are out in the open.
59:18 May Jesus be seen, reflected and revealed in us,
59:24 on us and through us,
59:28 in Jesus' name I pray.
59:32 And all of God's children said amen.