Sunday, November 7, 2010

Invitation Always Precedes Judgment

Good Monday Morning to you.

Last week raced by faster than a speeding bullet. It seemed as if I went to bed on Sunday night just to wake up the next Sunday morning. This is the kind of pace I love, though. I do not care for down time. I’m really enjoying getting out and promoting the new Church. I wish all of you could come and be with us. There is an excitement in the air like I have rarely witnessed before. People come in glad to see one another and expecting a touch from the LORD --- and boy is He touching. Our services are remarkable! I feel a freedom to preach as I haven’t felt in a very long time. Some of you reading this are with us --- thank you for being there. Some of you are coming and will be with us soon. For you we are praying for a safe trip whenever you do make the journey south. Some of you I can only communicate with through these Monday Morning blogs --- thank you for your faithfulness as well. Each of you will never know how special you are to the entire Cooper family. Some of you are part of my family. To you I make this promise: I’ll not tell what I know about you if you in turn will not spill the beans about me. Some things need to stay forever locked in the Cooper Family vault of forbidden secrets; like the time my brother and I ….. never mind, my mom reads this blog.

As I said, yesterday was another great day at Friendship Harmony Baptist Church. The music provided by Ken and Margaret was stirring and I preached a message called, “There Is A God In Heaven.” We looked at four people who received a word from God about their actions. One was king Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. He was a proud, arrogant man who boasted of “his” accomplishments. Daniel interpreted his dream and informed him that there is a God in Heaven. Nebuchadnezzar would credit God with much, but he also referred to his gods. What the king needed to learn was the first two commandments: Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God… Nebuchadnezzar would eventually “get it,” but not before God broke his stubborn pride and literally drove him to his knees where he grazed on the lawn of the palace. He did finally acknowledge God and I believe we will meet him one day in Heaven.

The next man was also a king of Babylon: Belshazzar. Belshazzar was a man who mocked and blasphemed God. He carried his blasphemy too far and literally committed a sin unto death. What is glaringly absent from his encounter with the LORD through the prophet Daniel is the opportunity to repent. The time for repentance had passed. Remember, Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…” Learn this point of theology: Invitation ALWAYS precedes judgment, but when judgment day comes, invitation ceases. For Belshazzar, it was judgment day; the writing on the wall said so. He learned as well that there is a God in Heaven. How sad he learned it too late.

Finally from the New Testament Book of Acts chapter five, we meet a husband and wife named Ananias and Sapphira; members of the early church. There is some debate among Biblical scholars as to whether or not they were true believers. We will leave that for them to argue because in the final analysis, it doesn’t matter. The Bible says, “ Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” (Galatians 6:7-8) Peter charged them with lying to God; also a sin unto death. How can I make such a claim? Read Acts 5:1-11.

Do you have unfinished business with God? Has the Holy Spirit been speaking to your heart concerning an issue? Remember, invitation always precedes judgment. If the LORD is speaking, you still have opportunity. Seize upon it as did king Nebuchadnezzar. Do not mock Him like Belshazzar. Do not lie to Him in similar fashion as Ananias and Sapphira. The Bible says in Isaiah 55:6, “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near.” If He is speaking to your heart, that is as near as He gets. Trust God my dear friend; obey your Bible.

Next Sunday Brother Bob Felber will be preaching for us. I can’t wait! I enjoy hearing Bro Felber preach --- I feast on God’s word when he does. I am so blessed that a preacher of his caliber wants to be my friend. I hope wherever you are, you faithfully attend services somewhere. If you need help finding a place to worship where you live; a place that will uncompromisingly feed you the word of God, perhaps I can help. I helped one faithful servant find a good church in Houston, Texas. I’d be honored to help you too. Stay safe and healthy this week. I enjoy our visits and would hate to miss you. I’ll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.


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