"HIGH TIME TO WAKE UP"
I. KNOWING THE TIME.
A. I believe that God wants us to know the times in which we live.
1. Matthew tells us the conversation between Jesus and the Pharisees and the Sadducees.
The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, [It will be] fair weather: for the sky is red.
And in the morning, [It will be] foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O [ye] hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not [discern] the signs of the times?
2. Paul writing to the church in Thessolonica said,
But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
3. Jesus gave to His disciples the signs of His return, and then said, "When these things begin to come to pass, look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth nigh."
B. The Lord has given so many signs of His coming that there is no excuse for being caught by surprise.
1. Jesus said, "As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of Man."
2. What were the days of Noah like?
a. Men were multiplying upon the face of the earth, or population explosion.
b. There was genetic engineering that was producing a race of gigantic men.
c. The wickedness of men was great.
d. That every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
e. The earth was corrupt before God and the earth was filled with violence.
3. Paul speaking of the last days said,
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
4. Have you watched the news or read your newspapers lately?
a. The statement lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.
b. In the days of the Old Testament this was known as the worship of Molech, which in the eyes of God was idolatry.
II. WHAT TIME IS IT? "HIGH TIME TO AWAKE OUT OF OUR SLEEP."
A. It would seem that the church for the most part is sleeping.
1. There doesn't seem to be an urgency about the things of the Lord.
2. You talk to people about the coming of the Lord, and they think that you have been dropping acid.
B. Jesus told a parable of the ten virgins as He told His disciples of His coming again for the church, He said,
While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
But the wise answered, saying, [Not so]; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
C. Jesus pictured the church as sleeping before His return.
D. Paul also saw that the church was asleep, but he is saying it is time to wake up from our sleep. It is the midnight cry, behold the Bridegroom is coming.
III. WHY SHOULD WE WAKE UP?
A. We have been sleeping long enough.
1. The church has been asleep while the world is going to hell around it.
2. We slept through the removal of prayer from the public schools.
3. We slept through the removal of the laws protecting us from the purveyors of pornographic filth.
4. We slept through the opening of the doors of the abortion clinics.
5. We slept through the paganizing of America.
B. Now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.
1. At the end of each day we can say, "I am one day closer to the coming of Jesus Christ."
2. My salvation is much nearer than when I first believed in Jesus.
3. Jesus is coming soon to deliver us from this present evil world.
C. Because the night is far spent and the day is at hand.
1. The night of the reign of darkness over the world is almost over.
2. The day of the Lord is at hand.
3. They say that it is always the darkest just before dawn. I cannot think of any scientific reason that that would be so, but I believe that we are in one of the darkest eras in the history of man.
a. There is not only a preponderance of evil.
b. There is such easy access to things that pollute the mind, and cause every imagination to be only evil continually.
IV. IN LIGHT OF THIS, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
A. Cast off the works of darkness.
1. If you have been caught in the filth available in the videos of the internet, stop immediately.
2. If you have any stimulating pornographic pictures or magazines get rid of them.
3. In our text Paul defines the works of darkness as partying drinking, sexual immorality, debauchery, dissension and jealousy.
4. To the Corinthians Paul said, "Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh or spirit."
5. James said, "Cleanse your hands sinners, purify your minds, you double minded."
B. Let us put on the armor of light.
1. Paul wrote to the Ephesians about the Christian armor.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
2. What are my defenses? Truth, rightousness, gospel of peace, faith, salvation, the word of God.
3. Here Paul says to walk honestly as in the day.
C. Finally Paul closes by saying. "Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof."
1. Your life is going to be controlled either by your flesh or by the Spirit. Which ever force you yield to.
2. You mind is filled with thoughts of the flesh or thoughts of the Spirit.
a. What do you feed your mind?
b. Things that build up the flesh or things that build up the Spirit?
3. In chapter 8 Paul told us that the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life peace and hope.