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Are You Ready? Part I
2/23/2010

Are You Ready-Part I
A Thief In The Night

Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Matthew 24:42-44 (NLKJV)

One day the Disciples of Jesus came to Him and wanted to know about the end of times, when Jesus was coming back and what would be the sign.  Jesus gave them many signs to point to the time, such as:

1.    We will hear of wars and rumors of wars. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.  (Mt. 24:6-7)

That pretty much sums up today's world as we hear of wars and rumors of wars as one nation rises up against another.

2.    And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. (Mt. 24:7)

In the mid 70's scientist found that the tectonic plates upon which the earth rests are shifting in a different way.  This change is causing more earthquakes and at larger magnitudes than ever before in recorded history - famine and plagues are following suit.

3.    It will be as it was in the days of Noah.  

This means people will be eating and drinking and giving in marriage as if everything is normal - right until the return of Christ.  Even though they know that God is coming back, they will continue to live in a casual way, rather than a watchful way that is prepared and expecting.

Jesus went on to say that,

4.    Many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another (Mt. 24:10).

In the last days, many will be arrested, hated, and even martyred for Christ.  Because of this persecution there will be many who turn against each other and abandoned the Christian faith.
 
5.    Many "False prophets" will rise up and deceive many (Mt 24:11).

We see this with false religions that reduce Jesus to only a "prophet" and God's Word (The Bible) to just another writing, and they take away Jesus' deity and oppose Him as being fully God.
 
6.    Because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold (Mt. 24:12).

The temptation of sin will consume the minds of many and they will become jaded to God's Word - the result being their love "Grows cold" for God and the reading His Word becomes diminished as their eyes are on the things of this world.

After giving the disciples the signs that would precede His 2nd coming, Jesus then started to give them a series of parables to illustrate that people needed to be ready for His return.  And within these parables He gives illustrations to depict the various types of people who will be caught off guard - people not ready to meet Christ face-to-face. Over the next few devotionals we will be looking at these illustrations and types of people so we can learn and be better prepared.

The first illustration that Jesus gave was that of a "Thief in the night."  He tells His disciples - and us - to, "Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect." (Mt. 24:42-44)

The first thing we need to know about this parable is that Jesus is not likening Himself to a thief - only that His coming will be as unexpected as one.  But I would comment that for those who are not saved, it would be much like a thief who comes to lay claim to everything that they considered more valuable than Him.  And the loss will be more devastating than any theft of such useless items.

Q:    So How can one be Ready?

A:    The primary way we can truly be ready is to be "Saved," which means confessing our sin, and repenting of the sinful lifestyle - it is to be "Born again" through a profession of faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior.  

Secondly, we must be spiritually ready.  This entails that we are living in an "Abiding relationship" with Jesus (See John 15).  When we see Jesus face-to-face, we should be ready to greet Him as our "Lord," and not our "Judge."

Hey Christian, I want to encourage you today.  Let's be ready for Christ's return, we may not know the exact day or hour, but we will know the signs of the times - and those signs are all present.  Let's put our eyes on the things of God and make use of the time we have left - it can mean the difference of life and death to many people that we know.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn from the Scriptures contained within this devotional with regard to Christs return?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you prepared for Christ's return?  Are you helping others to be prepared?

APPLICATION: Let's keep our eyes on God, and the things of God.  We need to be about our Father's business, so that when Jesus returns, we will be ready.

Father, Thank You for helping me to be prepared for Jesus' return.  Help me to continue to see things the way You do, and prepare me to help others to be ready.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott




Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000