HOW LONG, LORD? – Part Two


Romans 13:11-14 – “And this do, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. 12 The night is almost gone, and the day is at hand. Let us therefore lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.”  NASB

Last time we discussed the condition of being Asleep Spiritually and the dangers and damage that produces.  Today, it is our hope to move into an understanding that will produce a remedy to that problem 

THERE IS A NEED – The Need is Two-fold.

We need to Know or Discern the Time.  To know, means to understand, recognize, and realize the hour in which we live and our nearness to eternity.  It is imperative that we develop a right and a clear estimate of the time.  That can come through the prophetic utterance found in the Bible and thorough visible world conditions.

It is also needful that we develop a clear and correct understanding of the Value of Time.  If we are to awaken out of our spiritual slumber and become spiritually alert, we must come to an awareness of the Nearness of Redemption or the Coming of the Lord as seen in verse 11.  Also, because of the lateness of the hour, we need to awaken and invest ourselves in God’s purposes.  We are informed in verse 12 that the night is almost over, and the dawning of the new day is at hand therefore now is the time for action.

As we develop an awareness of the lateness of the hour spiritually, we realize that there is less time to reach the lost and unless we awaken and become involved some will enter eternity unprepared.  Jesus urged us in John 4:35 to realize that the harvest is not future but now.  He also revealed that His urgency as described in John 9:4 was that the night was rapidly approaching.  He was aware of the urgency of the nearness to eternity that man faced.

THERE IS A SOLUTION – – Action.

There is the call and need for immediate action where we put aside all sin and sinful practices.  There is the need to put on all of God’s spiritual armor so that we can be prepared for the battle and equipped to reap the harvest.  Ephesians 6:11 details the armor of God and I suggest that rather than this being something God adds it is putting on Christ and allowing Him to live His life in and through us. 

The solution, is to allow the Holy Spirit to transform us and enable us to live honestly and righteously.  Paul says, “let us behave properly as in the day.”  That is interesting for it identifies that all our conduct is visible for the world to see and we need to present them a visual that draws to Christ not repel from Him.  We are to live “not in wickedness.”  Stating that differently would be that we live “in righteousness.”  We do not allow the sensual to control us.  We have moral restraint and refuse to engage in contentiousness.  There is a change in our character, and we become manifestations as well as representations of Jesus.

The need for us to recognize the hour in which we live is urgent.  The devil would like nothing better than to lull the church to sleep and cause us to become inactive and complacent.  Jesus said, “If You love me, keep My commandments.” (John 14:15) and in verse 23 said, “If a man loves Me, he will keep my words.”

God’s call of this hour is to service, immediate action, holiness, and spiritual transformation.  Ezekiel expressed God’s lament in 22:30, “And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap for me before the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.”  Then, we hear Isaiah, who was awakened in Isaiah 6:8, “Also I heard the voice of the LORD, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?  Then said, I, here am I LORD; send me.”

What we have spiritually depends on us.  There will be those who perish eternally if we fail to answer God’s call.  We could become like the foolish virgins if we fail to awaken.  We can become all that God says we are, but not without total commitment and become awakened from our spiritual slumber.

God bless you as you enjoy this wonderful day in Him.

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