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ALWAYS BE READY

08 Aug

BE READY”

WHEN I WAS YOUNGER MY MOTHER WOULD ALWAYS ASK, “MICHAEL DEAN ARE YOU READY YET?” YES, BY THE WAY MY MIDDLE NAME IS MICHAEL DEAN, NAMED AFTER THE FAMOUS SINGER “DEAN MARTIN” I’M SURE ALL OF US AT ONE TIME OR ANOTHER HAVE BEEN ASKED THAT QUESTION. IS THAT NOT TRUE FOLKS? BEING ON TIME OR BEING READY OR EVEN GETTING READY FOR SOMETHING IS AS NATURAL AS IT COMES. IT’S INTRIGUING TO ME AS I STUDY SCRIPTURE HOW MUCH THE WRITERS DEVOTE TO THIS SEEMLY BORING OR EVEN INSIGNIFICANT SERIES OF EVENTS. THE WHOLE CONCEPT OF TIME, BEING, AND DOING IS QUITE COMMON IN SCRIPTURE. WHEN WE STUDY THE NEW TESTAMENT INCLUDING THE LIFE OF CHRIST IN THE FOUR GOSPELS, WE SEE JESUS BEING CONCERNED ABOUT COMING AND GOING, PREPARATION FOR TRAVELING TO DIFFERENT CITIES, TOWNS, AND VILLAGES. IT WOULD SEEM THAT HE’S PREPARING HIS DISCIPLES TO BE PREPARED FOR ALMOST ANYTHING.AS WE STUDY THE GOSPEL ACCOUNTS WE OBSERVE THEIR VARIOUS ENCOUNTERS WITH CERTAIN GROUPS OF THE DAY.AMONG THIS GROUP OF DISCIPLES IS A FISHERMAN NAMED PETER OR CEPHAS (WHICH IS TRANSLATED, A STONE) FROM THE SMALL VILLAGE OF BETHSAIDA WHICH LIES ON THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF THE SEA OF GALILEE. HIS NAME, “PETER” SEEMS TO BE QUITE APPROPRIATE, IF THERE WAS ANY AMONG THIS RAG TAG OF FISHERMEN, HE MOST CERTAINLY FIT THE BILL. HE WAS WITHOUT A DOUBT “THE SPOKESMAN FOR THE GROUP” HOW MANY TIMES DO WE SEE HIM STEPPING UP TO THE PLATE SO TO SPEAK. PETER WAS THE “ROCK” WHO THE REST OF THE GROUP IT APPEARS, LET’S HIM NATURALLY TAKE CHARGE. HE ALWAYS SEEMS TO BE THE ONE WHO SPEAKS UP, THE ONE WHO GETS OUT OF THE BOAT, THE ONE WHO TAKES THE SWORD TO DEFEND HIS LORD IN THE GARDEN. YOU KNOW WITH ALL HIS FAULTS THAT PEOPLE GENERALLY LIKE TO TALK ABOUT, HEY IF MY BACK IS EVER UP AGAINST THE WALL, I HOPE THAT PETER IS NEARBY SOMEWHERE. PETER IS WITHOUT A DOUBT THE STRONGEST PERSONALITY IN THE CROWD. BUT, UNFORTUNATELY THAT GOT HIM INTO SOME TROUBLE FROM TIME TO TIME. IF YOU RECALL, JESUS HAD TO REBUKE HIM ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS, HOW ABOUT THIS ONE: “GET BEHIND ME SATAN” OUCH, THAT HAD TO HURT. COULD YOU IMAGINE THE GUILT, THE SHAME THAT PETER MUST HAVE EXPERIENCED. THIS IS PRECISELY WHY I SAY ALL THE TIME, “WE ALL HAVE A LITTLE PETER IN US” IS THAT NOT TRUE? WHO HASN’T ACTED THE WAY PETER HAS AT ONE TIME OR ANOTHER!! GUILTY, WE’RE ALL GUILTY BEFORE OUR GREAT GOD ALMIGHTY. BRETHREN, I’M SO GLAD FOR THE GRACE OF GOD IN MY LIFE, HOW ABOUT YOU? MANY YEARS LATER THIS GREAT APOSTLE, THE SPOKESMAN FOR THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH, A LEADER IN THE EARLY CHURCH, AN ELDER(PASTOR) AND ULTIMATELY A MARTYR FOR HIS LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST, “WROTE A BOOK WELL TWO ACTUALLY” ENCOURAGING CHRISTIANS WHO WERE EXPERIENCING TRIALS AND ADVERSITIES. THE BOOK CAN EASILY BE BROKEN DOWN IN THE FOLLOWING MANNER: PETER DISCUSSES THEIR SALVATION, SUBMISSION, AND THEIR SUFFERING AS BELIEVERS. ONE OF MY FAVORITE SECTIONS IN THE BOOK COMES FROM CHAPTER THREE AND VERSE FIFTEEN. IT READS THIS WAY: “BUT SANCTIFY THE LORD YOUR GOD IN YOUR HEARTS AND ALWAYS BE READY TO GIVE AN ANSWER (OR DEFENSE) TO EVERYONE WHO ASKS YOU A REASON FOR THE HOPE THAT IS IN YOU, WITH MEEKNESS AND FEAR.” WHAT A POWERFUL PASSAGE, I MEAN WHERE DO YOU START!! THE MESSAGE, THE MEANING BEHIND THIS VERSE SHOULD MAKE US SIT UP AND TAKE NOTE. AS I TRY TO BRING THIS TO A CLOSE, I GUESS MY QUESTION WOULD BE, ” ARE YOU ALWAYS READY TO GIVE AN ANSWER OR ARE YOU CAPABLE OF DEFENDING THE TRUTH. HOW MUCH TIME DO YOU SPEND READING, MEDIATING, RESEARCHING, EXAMINING, AND THINKING ON THE WORD OF GOD. ALWAYS REMEMBER THIS THOUGHT: “GOD’S REPUTATION IS ALWAYS AT STAKE IN YOUR LIFE” LET THOSE FEW WORDS BURN IN YOUR MEMORY FOREVER!!! YOU ALSO NEED TO BE AWARE OF THIS AS WELL, “PROVIDING ANSWERS FOR TODAY’S QUESTIONS” FOLKS THAT’S WHAT WE’RE ALL ABOUT, HELPING PEOPLE TO KNOW JESUS, TO KNOW AND UNDERSTAND HIS WORD. LISTEN, PEOPLE ARE SO LOST TODAY THEIR SO STEEPED IN “SIN” THEIR SO BLINDED BY THE WORLD, OUR COMMISSION IS TO GO INTO ALL THE WORLD AND MAY I ADD THE FOLLOWING, “ALWAYS BE READY TO GIVE AN ANSWER” FOLKS THE ANSWERS ARE FOUND IN SCRIPTURE, JESUS IS THE ANSWER” HOW MANY ARE READY TO SHARE YOUR FAITH WITH SOMEONE THIS WEEK? GOD BLESS EACH AND EVERYONE OF YOU. “GO AND MAKE DISCIPLES” SO, UNTIL NEXT TIME MY FRIENDS!!!

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Posted by on August 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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